The Red Devil called time on his international career last year, but he is facing pressure to reverse his decision
The Super Eagles may have the undeniable goal-scoring talents of Victor Osimhen but lack the experience of Odion Ighalo needed to power to victory at tournaments, according to ex-international Dahiru Sadi. S
Sadi, who represented Nigeria at the 1988 Summer Olympics, charged coach Gernot Rohr to convince Ighalo to return to the Super Eagles because the team needs the striker’s experience and his ability to motivate the young ones.
Ighalo, who led the line for Rohr’s side at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, netted five goals at the 2019 African Cup of Nationa tournament as Nigeria came away with the bronze medal.
But he announced his international retirement shortly after, having netted 16 goals in 35 appearances.
His successor in the national team, Victor Osimhen, has found the back of the net four times in as many matches for the Eagles.
Osimhen also enjoyed a fantastic, 18-goal campaign in France, winning the Lille’s Player of the Year award.
But the 21-year-old is yet to lead the attack for the Super Eagles at a major tournament.
Sadi is convinced Ighalo, who recently signed a contract extension at Man United, still has a lot to offer the three-time African champions.
“We still need Ighalo in the Eagles because you can’t do away with his experience,” Sadi told the Guardian.
“I read it some time ago that the Eagles’ chief coach was contemplating bringing him back to the national team. Because I think the guy is still performing at the highest level.
“I’ll buy the idea of inviting him to the team because when you look at the Eagles now, they are made up of youngsters on the average of 22, 23, 24 years of age. These players are still young, and they need someone who they can look up to for inspiration.
“For me, it is good for him to come back and play for the country,” he said, adding that he believes that the local league could produce players fit for the Eagles.”