EAGLES, RWANDA NATIONS CUP QUALIFYING TIE
Super Eagles' Head Coach, Stephen Okechukwu Keshi, has expressed concern over the lack of international friendly match to shape up his players for the Africa Nations Cup qualifying tie against the Amavubi of Rwanda scheduled for February next year.
'The Big Boss' told Daily Sunsports at the Super Eagles' camp in Abuja yesterday that though he was worried over the lack of friendly games due to the absence of a FIFA window, he would have no option than to utilise properly the little time he has with the players.
The former Hawks of Togo handler noted that having seen some of the players briefly, he could only have problems with the like of Victor Moses, Victor Anichebe and others he has not met before.
Asked if lack of international friendly would affect his game plan against Rwanda, the former Eagles' captain said: 'I would love to play a friendly game before the qualifier against Rwanda, but there's no FIFA window before then.
'We have to live with that reality because there is nothing we can do about it. So, whatever we are doing now is geared towards building up for the match in February. The few days I will stay with the players before the game will certainly not be enough, especially as a new person trying to know the players.
'I have seen some of them, but have not seen Victor Moses and Victor Anichebe before. If they are invited, meeting them would be my first contact with them.
'If I have handled the team for at least one year, I would have known where I'm going with the players. But I have no option than to do what I have to do,' Keshi stated. The coach also took time to assess his Europe-based players and admitted: 'I'll say that they have impressed me, because they're beginning to come out of their shelves. They're beginning to hit form, scoring goals and playing regularly.
'I'm happy with what they're doing and I hope they would stay injury free. The most important thing to me is their health because I'm so concerned about their fitness. I know that they can always hit form if they remain healthy.'