Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi says that he would have loved to have had John Mikel Obi, Kenneth Omeruo and Emmanuel Emenike in his side that beat South Africa 2-0 in the Nelson Mandela Challenge played in Durban on Wednesday.
Keshi who is waiting to host a formidable depth of quality stars was yet again forced to execute its last avaliable friendly against South Africa without the services of foreign trio of Emmanuel Emenike, John Mikel Obi and Kenneth Omeruo.
Mikel was ruled out due to a stomach bug and Emenike had completed his switch from Spartak Moscow to Femerbahce and told team officials he needed time to settle down, while Omeruo is said to have suffered a relapse of the shoulder injury he picked up at the Fifa Confederations Cup in Brazil.
“I missed Mikel, Emenike and Omeruo and numerous other players, and my players missed them too. The good thing is that we are not building the team around individual players, we are rather working as a unit,” he told media.
“Our team has been evolving for a while. We played with a couple of players who haven’t been with the team for a while like, Victor Obinna Nsofor and Shola Ameobi who didn’t quite get into our movements off the ball and on the ball but will be gradually re-integrated as we go on.
“Bafana were expecting them in the first half, so I kept them to see how they measured up. They are not here to eat, so I had to put Uche (Nwofor) along with Moses and Musa and they delivered,” he added.
Nigeria face Malawi in a 2014 World Cup qualifier at home in their next match in September.