KRC Genk of Belgium striker, Paul Onuachu, has been called up to replace Moses Simon in the Super Eagles squad for the 2022 AFCON qualifier matches against Benin Republic on March 27, 2021, and Lesotho on March 30th.
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Moses Simon was omitted from the list owing to COVID-19 travel restrictions in France where he plies his trade with Nantes FC.
The initial list provided by coach Gernot Rohr left Onuachu on the standby list and generated a lot of debate and controversy due to the fact that he is the highest-scoring Nigerian striker in Europe so far with 27 goals in all competitions for Genk.
Onuachu has hardly impressed national team handlers since his debut against Egypt in an international friendly where he scored in just nine seconds for the Eagles.
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He was part of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations bronze-winning squad and some pundits believe his current form and experience with the national team is enough to earn him a place in Gernot Rohr’s squad.
Another Nigerian striker based in France that is set to miss the crucial qualifiers is Samuel Kalu who picked up an injury while playing for Girondins Bordeaux. Kalu has been replaced by Henry Onyekuru who plies his trade with Galatasary in Turkey.
A statement released by the Nigeria Football Federation via its Twitter handle made public the invitations of Onyekuru and Onuachu to the squad.
‘Following the uncertainty regarding the availability of players based in France (due to COVID-19 laws guiding the country), Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr has extended an invitation to KRC Genk striker Paul Onuachu. Henry Onyekuru was earlier called up to replace injured Samuel Kalu.’
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