Vincent Enyeama: Yobo still important to the Super Eagles

The national team’s first choice goalkeeper has tried to tone down the crisis brewing up between the captain and the team’s technical crew

Nigeria goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama has attempted to calm the tension brewing between captain Joseph Yobo and coach Stephen Keshi that has become public in recent days.

Yobo informed radio station Brila FM of his disappointment at being ignored for the Super Eagles’ 2014 World Cup qualification match against Kenya last month. The Fenerbahce defender had spoken of feeling “disrespected” at having to learn of his non-inclusion in the squad through the media like everybody else.

Enyeama who is vice captain of the team is the player that looks to profit from the shutting out of Yobo from the team by Keshi. He wore the captain’s armband during most of the matches as the Super Eagles won the Africa Cup of Nations in February and was named the tournament’s best goalkeeper.

 However, he has called for calm stating that Yobo still has a lot to offer the squad.

“We have to be careful in how we handle senior players of the national team, because we need their experience, leadership and above all they serve as motivation to the younger players,” said Enyeama according to national team media officer Ben Alaiya.

“That is why Yobo is still important and the technical crew knows so. If we treat them well the level of commitment of both the old and the new players will be total but if we do otherwise we will have problems on and off the pitch.”

Nigeria cannot afford to have player mutiny in their ranks ahead of a crucial period of World Cup qualifiers and Confederations Cup in June.

The Super Eagles will play a friendly match against Mexico in May before going to Nairobi for the return leg of their encounter against Kenya. They will then travel to Brazil for the Confederations Cup which pits together winners from all the continents.