Leicester City attacker, Kelechi Iheanacho has been declared below required fitness level for the last group match of the World Cup, hence his poor show in Tuesday’s crucial game of the Super Eagles against Argentina, while Ahmed Musa refused to be substituted.
In the wake of Nigeria’s 2-1 loss to the Argies, which sent the Eagles packing from the global soccer showpiece, Nigeria’s technical adviser, Gernot Rohr disclosed that playing Iheanacho in the decisive game was a mistake on his part, as he disclosed that the former Manchester City whiz kid was not fit to play, but says Musa insisted on staying put.
Iheanacho had Nigeria’s first chance but he failed to make the most of it, and Rohr would later affirmed that the attacker was not fit and he should not have started the lad, who was later replaced by equally ineffective Odion Jude Ighalo for the second half.
Apart from introducing ex-Watford striker, Ighalo at half-time, Rohr had to wait until the 90th minute before making his second change, taking out Kenneth Omeruo for Alex Iwobi, then made a third substitution in the second minute of injury time.
After it all, Rohr sensationally revealed that Iheanacho was not fit to start the game and Musa was insisted he was okay to carry on.
The Franco-German gaffer disclosed: “One of the players was not fit and if I had known he would not have started. We replaced him for the second half.
”There was a change already at half-time, so you cannot say it’s late changes. Then we did so well, we had one day less after the difficult match with Iceland and Argentina played the day before.
”I wanted to bring out Ahmed Musa but he said he wanted to stay and was fit to finish the match, we were waiting for the end of the match to make two other changes, everybody did well, nobody had to go out.
”If I had seen what happened in the first half, perhaps I would not have started with the same team because one of my players was not really fit and he went out halftime but you never can know.
”It’s possible one player in the starting XI is not fit, we have to accept that and make the change.”