Onazi Delighted With Injury Recovery Progress

Onazi Delighted With Injury Recovery Progress

Nigeria international Ogenyi Onazi says he is making good progress after his World Cup was ended by a late tackle from Blaise Matuidi during France’s win over the Super Eagles in the round of 16.

The midfielder was stretchered off with a suspected broken leg during the 2-0 defeat, although tests have since shown no fractures.

Coach Stephen Keshi had called for the governing body to take retrospective action against the French midfielder.

“I am improving a lot and I am delighted to be making significant progress with my recovery”
But the disciplinary commission decided that no further punishment was necessary for Matuidi, who was booked for the challenge and also apologised for the tackle.


Now Onazi has revealed he is making good progress in his native Nigeria and is not far off a return.

“I am improving a lot and I am delighted to be making significant progress with my recovery,” Onazi told BBC Sport.

“I have started running and although I’m in a little pain I am happy with my progress.
“With this injury, though, you need to be careful by not setting a time scale on a return, so I will wait until I am fully fit before touching the ball again.”

Despite the devastating heartbreak he suffered at the tournament, the 21-year-old insists Brazil 2014 was a positive experience.

“Even though we didn’t end the tournament as we would have loved to, we can only take the positives out of the experience as it will help the country in future tournaments” said Onazi.

“People did not give us a chance to come out of our group but we did and felt we could have done more.

“We should be pleased at least to have given the fans something to cheer about in terms of our performance; hopefully it will serve as a springboard to improve further.”

African champions Nigeria reached the second round of the World Cup in Brazil for only the third time in their history, having also done so in 1994 and 1998.

Meanwhile, BBC Sport understands the National Sports Commission (NSC) in Nigeria are desperate to halt the crisis blighting the country’s football.

On Wednesday Fifa suspended Nigeria from all international football amid allegations of government interference in its football federation.

The most immediate effect is that Nigeria will not be allowed to participate in the upcoming Under-20 Women’s World Cup, which starts on 5 August – should the suspension not be lifted by 15 July.

However, officials have landed in Brazil to explain the situation of things in the country’s football to Fifa, in a bid to have the ban lifted.

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