The three-time African champions will begin their World Cup qualifying campaign without two of their best players
Super Eagles head coach Jose Peseiro has confirmed that he will not invite Napoli striker Victor Osimhen and AC Milan winger Samuel Chukwueze for Nigeria’s engagements in November, Soccernet.ng reports.
Nigeria will take on Lesotho and Zimbabwe later this month in the first two games of the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaigns.
There have been doubts over whether Osimhen and Chukwueze, both carrying different degrees of injuries, would be available for the crucial qualifiers.
Osimhen picked up a knock while on international duty for Nigeria against Saudi Arabia last month, and he has not played for Napoli since then.
Chukwueze has also missed AC Milan’s last few games due to injury, but the flying winger has recently returned to training.
Milan manager Stefano Pioli revealed on Monday that the former Villarreal winger could make an appearance against PSG in the Champions League in midweek.
However, while both players could have outside chances of being fit enough for Nigeria’s qualifiers against Lesotho and Zimbabwe, Peseiro has decided to omit their names from the roster.
The Portuguese manager believes he is partly to blame for the injuries the two attackers suffered in October and has opted to allow them to recuperate fully for their respective clubs.
“Samuel Chukwueze and Victor Osimhen will not be called up during the next break; we want to avoid any risks,” Peseiro told TV Play, as per Milan Reports.
“I was very sorry for their injuries: the clubs pay the players, and we constantly collaborate with them.”
In Osimhen and Chukwueze’s absence, Peseiro is not short of attacking options for the Super Eagles.
Victor Boniface is enjoying a spectacular start to life in Germany, and the Bayer Leverkusen forward is Nigeria’s second most valuable player after Osimhen.
Ademola Lookman has rediscovered his goalscoring boots at Atalanta, while Paul Onuachu is back to his best form at Turkey’s Trabzonspor.
Chuba Akpom netted a brace on Sunday to guide Ajax Amsterdam to their first back-to-back wins in the Eredivisie this term.
Akor Adams has been almost unstoppable in his maiden campaign in the French Ligue 1, while Terem Moffi is a constant performer for high-flying OGC Nice.