At least five players from Nigeria’s original 28-man roster for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations have withdrawn.
Odion Ighalo of Al Shabab is the latest player to withdraw due to contractual responsibilities with his Saudi Arabian club.
Feyenoord forward Cyril Dessers is expected to take Ighalo’s spot.
Prior to it, after contracting COVID-19, Napoli’s hotshot Osimhen was left off the final list. As the athlete recovers from facial surgery, his Serie A club has threatened legal action.
Dennis Emmanuel, a forward for Watford, was similarly excused when his club prevented him from leaving, saying the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) had submitted his invitation letter late.
Both Leon Balogun and Abdullahi Shehu are sidelined due to injuries.
Tyrone Ebuehi and Semi Ajayi have returned to the squad, while Osimhen has been replaced by Henry Onyekuru, who was also in Egypt for the previous competition.
Peter Olayinka, a forward from the Czech Republic, will take Dennis’ spot.