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The Super Eagles coach says he hopes the Chelsea midfielder and Liverpool winger get to play more consistently at their clubs ahead of the World Cup

By Lolade Adewuyi

Nigeria coach Stephen Keshi has expressed worry at the inability of his star players to get important playing time at their clubs ahead of the World Cup in June.

Midfielder John Obi Mikel and winger Victor Moses have seen a reduction in their contributions at Chelsea and Liverpool this year.

Even though Keshi said the 23 slots in his team are still open for competition, they are both expected to play key roles in Keshi's team as the Super Eagles aim to reach the quarter finals for the first time in Brazil.

While Mikel has lost his starting place since the arrival of Nemanja Matic at Stamford Bridge, Moses has not been able to convince coach Brendan Rodgers to start him ahead of Englishman Raheem Sterling.

"It's unfortunate [Mikel and Moses] are not playing at their clubs regularly but these kids are good football players," said Keshi while responding to a question from Goal at a media roundtable organised by the national team's official sponsors TomTom in Lagos on Tuesday.

"They're not kids that I need to teach how to play football. It's just the chemistry that I need to bring into the team, the unity, the understanding.

"I would love them to be consistent at their clubs, to play every game but unfortunately I can't control that.

"I think they're in good shape because when I saw Mikel in the last game [against Mexico], he was sharp.

"I spoke to Moses about what is going on and he gave me an answer that I cannot say otherwise. It's difficult but I still need them, the team needs them," Keshi said.

Nigeria will hope that her best legs are good enough to match those of Group F opponents Argentina, Iran and Bosnia-Herzegovina when the World Cup starts in June.