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Awoniyi must 'sink his name into Super Eagles coach Peseiro's heart' - Akpoborie

18:14 BST 19/09/2022
Taiwo Awoniyi Nottingham Forest 2022-23
The former Liverpool player has a chance of starting against Algeria and the former striker has asked him to use the opportunity well

Ex-Nigeria striker Jonathan Akpoborie has challenged Nottingham Forest striker Taiwo Awoniyi to capitalise on the absence of Napoli star Victor Osimhen and Real Sociedad forward Umar Sadiq to stake his claim for a regular national team slot.

The aforementioned duo has been excluded from the Super Eagles squad to play Algeria in an international friendly match against Algeria in Oran owing to injuries.

The former Liverpool player will be battling for a starting berth alongside Cremonese attacker Cyriel Dessers and Leicester City's striker Kelechi Iheanacho during the upcoming friendly.

Akpoborie believes many players will be giving their best to impress the coach, but felt the 25-year-old is in a prime position to show his worth.

"This is one game that some of the invited players will be using to sink their names into the heart of the Super Eagles coach, Jose Peseiro," Akpoborie, who played for Bundesliga side VFL Wolfsburg, told Complete Sports.

"However, one player that has really caught my attention is Taiwo Awoniyi. This is a player that was scoring goals at Union Berlin before joining Nottingham Forest. And I expected him to be in the Super Eagles attack.

"Well, this is another great opportunity for him and he must grab the chance to impress the new coach."

Nigeria added Awoniyi's teammate Emmanuel Dennis to the squad after Henry Onyekuru pulled out owing to an injury sustained last weekend in the Turkish top-tier match between his Adana Demirspor team and Antalyaspor.

Leon Balogun of Stoke City has also been replaced by Valentine Ozornwafor of Sporting Charleroi, who is on loan at Sochaux, after picking up a knock in the Championship game.

Full Squad:

Goalkeepers: Francis Uzoho, Maduka Okoye, Adeleye Adebayo

Defenders: William Troost-Ekong, Kenneth Omeruo, Chidozie Awaziem, Olaoluwa Aina, Calvin Bassey, Zaidu Sanusi, Kevin Akpoguma, Leon Balogun.

Midfielders: Wilfred Ndidi, Frank Onyeka, Alex Iwobi, Richard Onyedika

Attackers: Ahmed Musa, Kelechi Iheanacho, Moses Simon, Samuel Chukwueze, Ademola Lookman, Henry Onyekuru, Taiwo Awoniyi, Chidera Ejuke, Cyriel Dessers, Terem Moffi