As the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) is set to start negotiating a new contract with Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr in January, former international defender, Ifeanyi Udeze has urged the NFF to mandate the national team manager to include home-based players in his squad if he eventually retained the job.
Udeze said the consistent exclusion of domestic players from the Super Eagles since Rohr took charge of the team has had a negative effect on the development of the NPFL.
The ex Paok of Greece backman said it would not augur well for Nigerian football if Rohr were allowed to continue inviting100 percent, foreign-based players, when his contract ends in June 2020.
Udeze also posited that inviting domestic and foreign-based players would go a long way in instilling a healthy competition in the Super Eagles team.
According to Udeze, “Inviting three players from the NPFL to prosecute international matches to me is not too much for the coach to do. It will compel NPFL players to work harder to raise their game having in mind that they will be invited to the national team.
“Playing among big players and top teams in the world will also help the home-based players confidence.
“Inviting 23 foreign-based players with just one goal keeper from the domestic scene does not reflect the world that Nigeria football is developing.”
He advised Rohr to start going round Nigeria to watch the league and pick the best players.
Udeze added: “The same approach of touring Europe to get players for the Super Eagles should also be re-enacted in Nigeria when he is reappointed to lead the Eagles.
“I understand that the NPFL players’ welfare is not as attractive as their foreign-based counterparts, but they should strive more to be in top form to attract invitation to Super Eagles.
“During my days in the Nigeria league, every week quality players were discovered in the league based on the passion we had for the game. The current players should work hard to improve on their game so that they will not disappoint some of us clamouring for their inclusion to the national team.”