Elche of Spain goalkeeper, Francis Odinaka Uzoho has joined the list of Nigerian players on injury roll call, ahead of their arrival at the Super Eagles’ camp for next weekend’s 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against South Africa.
Uzoho is one of three goalkeepers invited by Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr for the November 17 fixture in Johannesburg, but footballlive.ng learnt that he now looks in doubt for the game, after getting a knock to his ribs on Sunday.
This follows confirmation by his second division club that the lad on loan from Deportivo La Coruna has a rib injury, after he was taken off on a stretcher during his side’s 5-1 loss to Cadiz.
Uzoho subsequently went for medical tests at San Rafael Clinic in Cádiz, and initial results were not conclusive over his situation.
Though it was confirmed that Uzoho did not survive any fractured bone or broken rib, he was directed to receive further tests at his club’s base in Elche on Monday.
It means Uzoho is doubtful for Elche’s next league game against Las Palmas this Saturday, November 10 and Nigeria’s AFCON 2019 top of the table qualifier against South Africa the following weekend.
Before the scandalous loss to Cadiz, Uzoho kept two clean sheets for Elche, but looked woeful at Estadio Ramón de Carranza on Sunday.
The game saw Uzoho concede five goals in a single game for the first time in his professional football career and marked a downturn for the lad, who entered the record books last season as the youngest foreign keeper to debut in La Liga.
On Sunday, he became the first Nigerian keeper to concede five goals in the Spanish second-tier, as Cadiz netted five goals in the space of 25 minutes in the second half to claim their third win of the season.
It could now be a double blow for Uzoho, injured and lost shirt, as the coach at Elche, Jose Pacheta will return to veteran keeper, Jose Juan in the 19-year-old Nigerian shot-stopper’s absence.
Incidentally, Juan had been axed in favour of Uzoho after he conceded four goals against Deportivo, such that similar fate could now face Nigeria’s first choice netminder.