Football

2019 AFCON: Nigeria’s 25 man provisional squad (Full list)

Captain, Mikel Obi (L) returns to the squad

Nigeria on Tuesday released a 25-man provisional squad ahead of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations taking place in June in Egypt.

Six players also, which include Lokomotiv Moscow defender Brian Idowu has been placed on standby.

Surprise inclusions on the list the Nigeria German coach Gernot Rohr released on Tuesday, were Leon Balogun and Kelechi Iheanacho, who barely play for their respective club side in the Premier League.

Goalkeeper Francis Uzoho who has been heavily criticised by many Nigerians, kept his place in the squad.

The six players on standby players include defenders Ikouwem Utin, who recently completed a move to Maccabi Haifa in the Israeli Premier League and Valentine Ozornwafor who has also been named in Nigeria’s final 21 for the FIFA U20 World Cup starting in Poland next week.

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Russian born defender, Bryan Idowu alongside Portugal-based Mikel Agu and Egypt-based Junior Ajayi, and home-based goalkeeper Theophilus Afelokhai, are also on standby.

The invited players are expected to report at the Golden Tulip Hotel, Asaba, Delta State on Sunday, June 2.

Nigeria plays Burundi, Guinea, and Madagascar in Group B. The tournament will run from June 21 to July 19.

The full list of players, below:

Goalkeepers: Francis Uzoho (Anorthosis Famagusta, Cyprus); Ikechukwu Ezenwa (Katsina United); Daniel Akpeyi (Kaizer Chiefs, South Africa)

Defenders: Olaoluwa Aina (Torino FC, Italy); Abdullahi Shehu (Bursaspor FC, Turkey); Chidozie Awaziem (Caykur Rizespor, Turkey); William Ekong (Udinese FC, Italy); Leon Balogun (Brighton & Hove Albion, England); Kenneth Omeruo (CD Leganes, Spain); Jamilu Collins (SC Padeborn 07, Germany); Semi Ajayi (Rotherham United, England)

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Midfielders: Mikel John Obi (Middlesbrough FC, England); Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City, England); Oghenekaro Etebo (Stoke City FC, England); John Ogu (Hapoel Be’er Sheva, Israel)

Forwards: Ahmed Musa (Al Nassar FC, Saudi Arabia); Victor Osimhen (Royal Charleroi SC, Belgium); Moses Simon (Levante FC, Spain); Henry Onyekuru (Galatasaray SK, Turkey); Odion Ighalo (Shanghai Shenhua, China); Alexander Iwobi (Arsenal FC, England); Samuel Kalu (Girondins Bordeaux, France); Paul Onuachu (FC Midtjyland, Denmark); Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City, England); Samuel Chukwueze (Villarreal FC, Spain)

Standby: Theophilus Afelokhai (Enyimba FC); Bryan Idowu (Lokomotiv Moscow, Russia); Ikouwem Utin (Enyimba FC); Mikel Agu (Vitoria Setubal, Portugal); Junior Ajayi (Al Ahly, Egypt); Valentine Ozornwafor (Enyimba FC)

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