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Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi says he does not need Osaze Odemwingie, Taye Taiwo and Obafemi Martins

Posted: 22 December 2012 Time: 19:53

Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi says he left out the senior trio of Osaze Odemwingie, Taye Taiwo and Obafemi Martins from his provisional squad because they are not needed at the moment.

All three were left out of a provisional 32-man squad for next month's African Nations Cup, and there have been suggestions that a lingering rift from past misdeeds with the coach might be responsible.

The Nigeria coach said that was not the case.

"I have no problems with them, they are good players, but I just don’t need them now," Keshi told KickOffNigeria.com. "They are still in my plans but not just now.

"I even spoke to to Osaze three days ago. I told him I was still compiling the list and that if he makes the squad fine, if he doesn't make it, fine."

Millwall captain Danny Shittu was handed a recall, and Keshi admitted it was to plug the holes in his defence.

"Yes. We just want to make sure we strengthen every department in the field. Shittu has been doing well in his club and we hope he can do the same for the national team like he has done before."

Keshi has until January 9 to decide on his final 23.

Nigeria are grouped with Zambia, Burkina Faso and Ethiopia for the African Nations Cup which begins January 19 in South Africa.

Previous comments on this story...

posted: 09:23 pm
Nigeria's main problem now is the back. Keshi cannot manufacture defenders that we do not have. Shittu has been doing very well in his current club. Recalling him is tactically spot on!
posted: 05:46 am
Recalling an expereinced Shittu was a wise decision!
posted: 06:07 am
My Opinion remains concrete....Shitu's inclusion is ok, Osazee exclusion is ok (even though he is on top of his game, his attitude might be a distractionton, and his exclusion will also put the fear of God on every player in camp). Martins' exclusion is o.k. because his great form at club level doesn't translate into the super eagles camp/matches. He is a good player though. Taiwo's exclusion is crazy. We needed him in this squard, I respect Echiejile and think they should both have made the team.

If there is no sensible reason, Sone Aluko's none invitation to any trial and his subsequent exclusion is not just troubling, not only suspicious, but criminal. Keshi MUST answer football loving Nigerian's questions about this.
posted: 07:09 am
posted: 11:08 am
Petres Sanchez!

Let me give you guys my Honest and expert view of the team list:
I would only point out inclusions and exclusions that have raised eyebrows on Social media...
1. Rabiu Ibrahim:
This guy was included because,
a. He is the only player in Nigeria that is "Crafty" Yes I said so. "Crafty" No other player can give you what he will
b. You said he has only played one substitute appearance for Celtic? Yes, But Celtic is a Champions League team and if you bring our Valerenga guy@Ogude here, he wouldn't make Celtic bench
c. Have you read about a certain "Dos Santos" of Mexico who made no appearance for Tottenham but was one of the best performers at the FIFA World Cup
d. Finally Rabiu has a big heart like "Moses" a xteics many of our players lack, I remember him stating that he would only be playing for a club if there are title champions or UCL participants:e.g PSV,

2. Taiwo
I agree with all those calling for his head, this guy wouldn't bring anything new to the table

3. Shittu
His inclusion is "Madness" This guy was once rejected by all clubs even Enyimba, He's too heavy and slow

4.Bright Dike
I have said it before now, He's below average, Skill-less and heavy

5. Ameobi
12 Games before a goal....@Newcastle says it all we have only 6games @afcon so I would use guys that are use to goals not those that can hold ball because in Africa you don't hold ball except you wanna be hacked

Lets see the exclusions

He's useful but!!! we can't bench him and we can't start him,..not better than Musa and Victor on the wings and Brown + Emenike attack ..and if we bench him, it becomes a social problem..what will you do?

This is the biggest mistake Nigeria made! You rate martins with venezuela match infact he needs no testing, one of the top 5greatest goal scorers in our country..Men we failed there @Dike and the rest homebased know they are far from martins quality. Check this out we only have Emenike and Martins as the strikers that can play alone upfront in the whole country! what if emenike goes bad?or tired?or injured?
Can bright, kalu and co play alone?

In African football there would always be set-pieces infact when we meet CIV the decider may be a set-piece from Drog. Why leave the only Player that can do that. Crazy eh?

Mad People always call for Mad people. He's a defensive midfielder so compare his inclusions with those playing same positions(Mikel, Reuben and Nosa) don't compare his inclusion with R.Ibrahim(attacking)

Kalu Uche: LOOOLLL
I wonder how many strikers you want to take
When you want to rate strikers use this formula its gonna help you
Number of Goals/Class of Defenders
Am sure your maths worked well, then you realize Brown Ideye and Emenike are the Biggest

People that are calling for these players esp. Obasi, don't have satelite TVs in their houses
Obasi Last started for S-04 7Months Ago
Nsofor just recovered, never played 90minutes in 7months

Generally I would say that the exclusions of Martins and Aluko are not justifiable but I see tactical knowledge in the initial inclusion of Rabiu (he might not pass so don't be bothered) But we all should support the coach
posted: 06:33 pm
Kickoff coaches una too get ego! Why una no go apply for coaching job and proof
Una self to nff! Una get problem.make una leave keshi alone.
posted: 07:11 pm
Nigeria will NOT sniff ANC trophy or winners' medals, they will be knocked out in the first round and that wil pave the way for KESHI's deserving EXIT. This guy is very corrupt, he was one of the Eagle mafias, his true colors is starting to show and he will get what he deserve. Keshi complains of not getting paid and not worried about it at the moment, lets see what happens when he gets fired. In addition, he is not worried since he is using ANC to sell players. KESHI's selection has bribery written over it, whoever that takes Bright Dike over Martins, Kalu Uche, Ezekiel Imoh, or Anichebe is out of their mind, and whoever that takes Rabiu Ibrahim or Onazi over Haruna needs a psych consult. KESHI is NOT RIGHT for Nigeria short and simple. What he just did wll course any chance of qualifying for Brasil 2014 because a lot of these guys left out will not respect him as a coach or want to play under his tenure. Most of them are right because they were not left-out based on merit, but pure bias & bribery.

Furthermore, the sports ministers has already distanced themselves away from KESHI, and this empty vessel do not see that his failure means no support rather sacking. He is clueless and arguably one of the worse coach to take Nigeria to ANC. Same thing that happened to Mali will happen to us.

KESHI "Mr. REBUILDING" needs to GO!!!!!!!!!! because he is corrupt and unprofessional. There is too many evidence to proof this claim and they are all in his selection.
posted: 09:55 pm
Keshi needs to grow up. Where is your man management skills? Siasia had almost the same issue when he was the helm and at that point, Keshi was one of those criticizing Siasia for mismanaging the players that he would have done a better job. So this is your better job. Inviting Dike is the proverbial better job?.. Is Dike better than the dropped players? He should have taken Osaze's behavioral issue as a challenge to prove his man management skills he proclaimed prior to stealing the job from Siaone.
posted: 07:12 pm
Keshi, you are the coach, your selection, your vision for our soccer team. Keep up the good work
posted: 10:40 pm
Reacting to this in a telephone chat with Tribunesport on Monday, Akpoborie said bringing the likes of Odemwingie, Martins and Taiye Taiwo into the team at this moment is like taking the country three years backwards, because they have no business in the team.

“Osaze is not bigger than any Super Eagles player or the country, if you look at the statistics of the matches he has played for the country, he is not one of the best players in the country in terms of performance, if you calculate it, he is not, and his outburst is out of order shouting at everybody.”

Akpoborie added: “Why is he shouting, he will be two years older than his age when we play the World Cup in 2014, so what has he got to offer, we need to encourage the younger players and expose them, he has nothing to offer and more so, the country has better players playing the same position as Osaze and they are even more committed than he is, so I think, he should learn how to accept the situation he is in. “He does not have to shout or insult everybody. As a professional footballer, a professional doesn’t behave the way he does, why did he wait till now before shouting? He should have done this long before now, he should respect his coach because no responsible player insults his coach.”

He however advised Keshi and NFF not to engage him in any argument or explanation, saying replying him will give him a swollen head and make him think he is a super star.

Well said Jonathan Akpoborie. Osazee is very very hot headed. Let’s for a minute look away from his arrogance towards all Super Eagles Couches since he started playing. Let’s pretend to agree with some that he is only a very outspoken person and we need the likes of him that has 27 balls under their legs. Let’s for a minute forget about what his attitude would have been if substituted. Let’s again forget the diversion and division his argumentative or seemingly fearlessness would have brought to the team. Have we even considered his unprofessional conduct on the field of play, like hitting back on an opponent when he is fouled? With a player that doesn't have any regard for his couches, his captains, fellow players, journalists and Nigerians but himself; his being sent off the pitch for childish mistakes like that would have definitely cost us a lot. Let him ask Couch Lagerback whether or not he regretted the inclusion of Sani Kieta in the 2010 world cup squad? We appreciate his past commitments, but times have changed. "Character is like pregnancy that cannot be hidden". We wish his wife a peaceful and safe delivery. Period.
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