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Why Rohr may not invite Home-Based Players for upcoming AFCON

By Emmanuel Oladele - With few months to the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon, Super Eagles of Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr will be releasing the list of 28 players that with take part in the biggest Africa Football Fiesta.

Rohr maybe inviting Europe based players to make up his 28-man list for the tournament due to the inconsistency of Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL. Most leagues in Europe and other African countries are currently playing their 2021/22 league season, but it's a different case in Nigeria as the Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL, is yet to kick off, and does not have any certain kickoff date. The players in the Nigerian League have been playing in pre-season tournaments which are less competitive like the league. For some clubs, they are only keeping themselves busy with friendlies and trainings, while few ones are playing in the continental games, which does not have a lot of fixtures like the league.

It's sad that as at today 30th October, 2021, the League Management Body, LMC can not precisely reveal when the Nigeria Professional Football League will commence.

It will be very difficult for Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr to pick players from Nigerian League clubs due to the off and on style of the league, and moreover, players that have not been playing active football over some months will found it difficult to be selected for a major tournament like the Africa Cup of Nations, AFCON, hence, Europe based players and others who are not playing their football in Nigeria that have been kicking the ball week in, week out, having good match fitness will be the perfect fit for the upcoming 2021 AFCON.

The 2021 Africa Cup of Nations will kick off on Sunday, January 9, 2022 in Cameroon and Rohr will have to battle pressure from football fans and stakeholders in Nigeria when the home-based lads are not invited for the greatest Africa Football Fiesta.

The Super Eagles of Nigeria will be playing their first match on Tuesday 11th of January, 2022 against Egypt at the Roumdé Adjia Stadium, Garoua, Cameroon. Below are all Super Eagles' AFCON Group Stage Fixtures;

MATCH DETAILS

• Tue. 11/01/2021. Nigeria vs Egypt 16:00 - Roumdé Adjia Stadium, Garoua.

• Sat. 15/01/2021. Nigeria vs Sudan 16:00 - Roumdé Adjia Stadium, Garoua.

• Wed. 19/01/2021. Guinea-Bissau vs Nigeria 21:00 - Roumdé Adjia Stadium, Garoua.

Note: All Time in Nigerian Time (+1 GMT).

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