2021 AFCON Qualifiers: Rohr may drop Onuachu, Etebo

Ahead of next month’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Sierra Leone, Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr may drop Europe-based duo Paul Onuachu and Oghenekaro Etebo from his squad for the double-header.

Nigeria currently leads Group L with six points from two games after recording wins against Benin Republic and Lesotho and will be aiming to secure early qualification for the 2021 AFCON by recording back-to-back wins over the Leone Stars.

The trio faces stiff competition to keep their places in the team due to their below-par performance at club level recently.

Etebo, who secured a loan move to Spanish club, Getafe, during the January transfer window, has made only two appearances since joining from Stoke City and has missed out on his club’s last two games against Atletic Bilbao and Valencia. It remains to be seen if he will be available for the clash against Barcelona at Camp Nou on Saturday.

Onuachu, who has scored seven goals in 18 league games for Genk, has fired blanks in his last three games, and last featured for Genk in their 1-0 win over Sporting Charleroi on February 2nd.

He has also failed to score for the Eagles in his last six games for the national team.

According to a top Nigerian Football Federation official, the former Midtjylland striker doesn’t fit into the new-look Eagles.

Also, centre-back Leon Balogun’s chances of returning to the team remains a doubt as he is yet to get his club career off the mark after joining English Championship club, Wigan, from Brighton Hove Albion.

Balogun was left out of the Eagles’ opening two games against Benin Republic and Lesotho after he dropped in the pecking order.

William Troost-Ekong, Semi Ajayi, Kenneth Omeruo and Chidozie Awaziem are ahead of the 31-year-old defender.

Meanwhile, reliably scooped that Leicester City forward Kelechi Iheanacho is poised to return to the Eagles nine months after he was dropped from the 2019 AFCON squad.

Iheanacho has been the Eagles’ most prolific player this season in Europe scoring eight goals in 14 games across all competitions for Leicester City.