A successful national side is not only about the present but also a long-term future and Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr should have his eyes on building a solid foundation for the next 10 years.
There are some exceptional young Nigerian players around who can help him do the job. In this article, let us take a look at five such young players who could be in Gernot Rohr’s shortlist.
5. Adamu Chukwubuike Jr
Highly regarded as the biggest talent to come out of the academy of Red Bull Salzburg, Adamu could be a long-term replacement of Ahmed Musa.
The forward has everything you demand from a defender and the best thing about him is his ability to destroy the opposition. He also has an eye for goals.
4. Tosin Adarabioyo
Fulham are having a season beyond expectations this year and a player who has been central to that is defender Tosin Adarabioyo. The stopper has been excellent this campaign for Fulham and his solid showings at the heart of the defence have not gone unnoticed.
Adarabioyo is exactly the kind of player Uche Okechukwu was at his prime. With the ability to intercept balls from defence and leadership skills, he is a player who can fit in well in Super Eagles’ tactics. The defender boasts of solid physical prowess, has bags of pace and possesses an impressive ball-playing ability. With proper guidance, he could be a complete central defender in the coming years.
3. Felix Agu
What a player in the making we have in Felix Agu! Only last season, he was playing for Osnabruck. He was snapped up by Werder Bremen at the end of last season. A talent of the highest level who can score and create goals as well as prove to be a menace to any team in the Bundesliga, Agu reminds us of a young Celestine Babayaro.
2. Eberechi Eze
There are very few Nigerians who can bring goals to their game on a regular basis and Eze can do exactly that. However, the player’s game is not just about scoring goals. The Crystal Palace playmaker is a top-class player with an excellent ability to create goals and link-up well with team-mates.
To some extent, Eze’s game is a bit similar to how Austin Okocha used to play. In Rohr’s 4-3-3 system, Eze would be a perfect fit with his all-round ability.
1. Michael Olise
A player who can be a revelation in the playmaker role at Super Eagles is Reading starlet Michael Olise. With the quality the French eligible player possesses, he could be their very own Okocha. The 19-year-old should definitely be at the top of Super Eagles’ priority list. Olise has an impressive range of passing and can dictate play from deep in midfield. The youngster is a calm influence in midfield and is an important player in the Reading midfield.