Ambrose Ogbuobodo, Lagos
Super Eagles manager, German Gernot Rohr is keen to explore Paul Onuachu’s attributes, with the striker set to make his Nigeria debut against Seychelles in Friday’s 2019 African Cup of Nations qualifier.
After being overlooked for a Super Eagles invite despite his prolific output at Danish club FC Midtjylland over the past few seasons, the lanky marksman was handed a maiden call-up for Nigeria’s Group E Afcon qualifying inconsequential encounter against Gavin Jeanne’s side and Egypt friendly.
With leading goalscorer Odion Ighalo still holding his spot as the team’s first-choice no. 9, Rohr is looking for an alternative with a ‘different profile’; a category the 6’7 24-year-old falls.
According to the German tactician, Onuachu will play ‘at least 45 minutes’ on Friday, as prospects of a productive partnership with captain Ahmed Musa, Alex Iwobi and other widemen fascinates him.
“We have possibilities to see everybody because we have two games. We will see a lot of players,” Rohr said in a press conference.
“And Paul Onuachu will play at least 45 minutes also or even more. We are searching for a player in his profile; tall, he is more than two meters high, good with the head.
“We have [Odion] Ighalo already and we are very satisfied with what he is doing since the World Cup but with Paul Onuachu, perhaps, it’s another possibility to find a different profile. It could be interesting to see him playing together with Ahmed Musa, Alex Iwobi, Henry Onyekuru, and Moses Simon,”
Onuachu, who has scored 14 goals for his club this season, will hope to impress Rohr, who took Crotone’s Simeon Nwankwo – a striker with similar attributes – as an ‘alternative’ to the 2018 Fifa World Cup in Russia.
The Italy-based marksman, however, made no appearance at the quadrennial event as Nigeria exited in the group stages.