Bench warmers can lift Eagles in Brazil, says Jonathan Akpoborie

The ex-international believes the success of the Super Eagles rest on the shoulder of players who play passive roles for their clubsides
Former Nigeria striker Jonathan Akpoborie is assured that Nigeria can still do well at the 2014 Fifa World Cup in Brazil despite bench roles of some Super Eagles players in their respective clubs.

Coach Stephen Keshi is expected to name his provisional squad for the competition which begins in June with regulars who play passive roles for their clubs expected to make the list..

“The players selected by Keshi will be the major factor to determine how well we’ll perform. I’m just hoping we’ll get the players that will do the job well for us,” Akpoborie told Punch.

“The selection should be based on players’ active roles in their clubs. Most of the players that qualified us for the World Cup have been sitting on the bench.

“But the bench roles some of these players play at their clubs may not work against the Super Eagles if the coach has a strategy that can bring the best out of them.

“A lot of people can argue about it but Greece won the 2004 European Championship with majority of the players as bench warmers at the various clubs.

“It depends on the programmes the coach has for them and I’m expecting a good outing for Nigeria in Brazil,” he concluded.