Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr has named 32 year-old striker Odion Ighalo in the provisional 31-man squad for next month’s FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
Ighalo announced his retirement from international football in 2019, but Rohr insists there has not been a suitable replacement for the “special player”.
Last season Paul Onuachu, Simy Nwankwo, Terem Moffi and Sadiq Umar playing in the Belgian Super League, Serie A, Ligue 1 and LaLiga 2 respectively all reached double figures in their Leagues alone, totaling 87 goals.
But only Onuachu and Moffi had managed to get minutes in the national team; a combined 251 minutes in five matches across the AFCON qualifiers, World Cup qualifiers and two international friendlies against Cameroon.
However, Ighalo is yet to make an official announcement about his return to the national team, although NFF President Amaju Pinnick had dropped strong hints the Saudi Arabia based forward’s “body language” appears positive.