Super Eagles centre-forward Odion Ighalo has expressed disappointment as he is set to miss the crunch 2019 African Cup of Nation qualifying game against South Africa on November 17.
The Former Watford striker was replaced by Galatasary football Onyekuru as Genort Rohr side suffers another major injury hit after losing first choice goalkeeper Francis Uzoho to injury last week.
Odion Ighalo suffered injury in his clubside’s 2-2 draw with Tainjin Quanjin, and is set to sit out of football for four to five weeks. The injury meant that the Nigerian hitman has ended his appearance in the Chinese Super League in the current season.
Top-placed Nigeria visit second-placed Bafana Bafana in a crucial Group E match at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg as they seek to seal qualification for the continental showpiece after their absence at the last two editions in 2015 and 2017.
Odion Ighalo who is the top scorer in the qualifiers has expressed his sadness over missing the crunch game. In an interview with Kwese Sports, Ighalo said: “I was devastated and sad throughout the night because I have planned for and was waiting for this game. We were all very upset that we lost that first game and everybody wants to play the game to make amends, but God knows best”. “It is a very important game for us because we have missed two Nations Cups and we want this so bad. Also, we don’t want to lose to them again. I can’t travel right now, unfortunately. But I believe in the boys and I know that they will do the job there.”
Meanwhile, former Flying Eagles tactician Ladan Bosso has said that it was unfortunate that Ighalo will miss the game considering his superb form at the moment.
He said, “It is painful when you lose your top scorer to injury ahead of an important match but as a coach, there are other options you can make use of to get the needed result. The Eagles are well-motivated than the South Africans. The Eagles know that they only need a point to qualify and also protect their pride against the South Africans – that is the motivation needed for them to win the game”. “The team will not miss Ighalo much because there are other strikers in the team who want to stake a claim that they can do the job; this is the opportunity they have been waiting for. It is all to the benefit of the team.”