Super Eagles head coach, Gernot Rohr, has ignored Nigerian fans warning not to bring Odion Ighalo out of retirement to the Super Eagles.
The German said he has included the former Manchester United striker in his provisional roster for the upcoming 2022 World Cup qualifying matches against Liberia and Cape Verde.
Ighalo called time on his international career after helping Nigeria to a third-place finish at the 2019 African Cup of Nations in Egypt, emerging as tournament top scorer with five goals.
Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) president Amaju Pinnick and Rohr have been attempting to persuade him to reverse his decision to quit the national team without success.
Rohr pointed out that he wants the Al Shabab striker because the Super Eagles badly need his leadership qualities with so many young strikers in the current squad, and has labelled Ighalo a ‘great player’.
“We miss his leadership, we miss his experience, we miss the goals he scored, he was the best goalscorer in the last AFCON, he was the best goalscorer in the qualifiers and I think we have so many young players that could learn a lot on the side of such a great player.
“Ighalo is a very important man, I hope that he can come back, I put him on the first list, provisional list for the next games.
“We are in touch, he’s doing very well in the club and he still has the ambition to help his country,” Rohr told Elegbete TV.
“We have so many good strikers. We invited the last time, Awoniyi, we had Moffi, we had the other one Onuachu, like you know Osimhen of course is actually number one but we don’t have anyone like Ighalo.
“Ighalo is different, he’s a special player, he sees everything, he smells the football so I think our team love his maturity with his experience. He could help us much more.”
Osimhen has impressed since stepping into the shoes of Ighalo after AFCON 2019, scoring eight goals while providing six assists.