Super Eagles Manager Gernot Rohr will be without his in-form striker Victor Osimhen when Nigeria play Sierra Leone in Freetown on Tuesday, in the second-leg of their AFCON qualifying match.
Osimhen’s four goals in three AFCON qualifying matches makes him Nigeria’s top scorer, but the 21 year-old is ruled out injured and has not travelled with the team.
“We’ll miss Osimhen of course,” said Rohr after watching his team’s training session inside the Siaka Stevens Stadium on Monday.
After a disappointing first-leg draw in Benin City, the German coach needs his team to redeem with a win against a very resolute Leone Stars.
The Super Eagles have not won in their last three matches and have conceded an average of two goals per game – but scored just once when Osimhen was not available.
Kelechi Iheanacho scored against Tunisia in a friendly match last month and is the only forward to register a goal in the Super Eagles when Osimhen isn’t on the pitch.
Rohr has Iheanacho as well as Paul Onuachu and Dennis Emmanuel as options in Tuesday’s qualifier.
Onuachu has been capped nine times and a spectacular volley against Egypt in an international friendly is the only goal he has in his Eagles’ resume.
On the other hand, Emmanuel has been handed only 19 minutes since he made his international debut against Ukraine last year.
However, the Manager is hopeful every player will step up and ensure the team ends its winless rot.
‘[Osimhen’s absence]… that’s the only change, but every player will fight until the end of the match.’
Victory for the three-time African champions cam guarantee Nigeria a ticket to the tournament in Cameroun, unless of course Sierra Leone have other plans.