Football

Under-20 World Cup: Samuel Chukwueze cleared to play for Super Eagles

Nigeria have named a strong 21-man squad for this month’s Under-20 World Cup in Poland.

As expected Villarreal’s Samuel Chukwueze has been omitted clearing the way for him to play for the Super Eagles at the Africa Cup of Nations.

Former England youth international Tom Dele-Bashiru of Manchester City and Bournemouth midfielder Nnamdi Ofoborh have both been included.

Coach Paul Aigbogun has included ten members of the squad that helped Nigeria qualify for the World Cup by reaching the semi-finals at February’s Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations.

“This is largely a stronger squad than those who played in Niger and the NFF has provided adequate preparations for the team ahead of the World Cup,” Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) director of communications Ademola Olajire told BBC Sport.

The side has already come in for criticism following an uninspiring fourth place finish at the continental finals in Niger.

Despite global successes at under-17 and Olympic (under-23) levels Nigeria have never won the Under-20 World Cup despite having appeared at 11 previous tournaments.

Runners-up in 1989 and 2005, Nigeria will open Group D against Qatar on 24 May, then face United States before finishing the group campaign against Ukraine.

Ghana are the only African side to win the Under-20 World Cup when they beat Brazil on penalties in the 2009 final in Egypt.

 

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