Katsina United playmaker Destiny Ashadi reflects on 'surprise' Nigeria call-up for Atletico Madrid friendly

The attacking midfielder was rewarded for his consistent showings in the Nigerian top-flight and is eyeing a run-out against the Europa League winners

From playing with Nigeria Professional Football League colleagues a week ago to prospects of squaring up against Spanish giants and newly crowned Europa League winners Atletico Madrid, Katsina United's Destiny Ashadi reveals it was one he never saw coming.
A second string Nigeria team will face the LaLiga side in a hybrid friendly at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium on Tuesday and 20 players - a mix of foreign and domestic talents - were called up by coach Salisu Yusuf.
“I feel happy. I'm happy," Ashadi told Goal.
"No, I wasn't expecting a call-up, it was a surprise.
"I would be happy and feel great to play against Atletico Madrid."

The attacking midfielder has continued to highlight his importance to Katsina United this season, having a hand in 11 [six goals, five assists] of their 26 goals in the NPFL, amid several virtuoso displays. And the feat helped Abdullahi Biffo's side stay in the top-half [currently fifth] of the table.
However, with MVV Maastricht's Kelechi Nwakali and Austria Wien's Alhassan Ibrahim among those invited, there would be competition for places in the player's favoured No. 10 position.

But Ashadi would rather not think for Salisu-led coaching crew.
"Mine is just to be calm, play my football and leave the rest for the coach because I can't tell the coach to use me because I'm not in his mind so I don't know what he has in mind," he said.
In the past, the CHAN Eagle has shunned several advances from Nigerian top-flight sides, Kano Pillars the latest during the recent mid-season transfer window, reiterating his desire for a direct move abroad at the 'right time'.
Asked whether a game against Diego Simeone's side is his passport to alerting the world of his playmaking skills, Ashadi objects: "I'd say it’s not the perfect opportunity.
"We are playing a friendly match which is only one match and I'm not sure if I'm going to start or not. So, I may be excused to think otherwise [if it is not the perfect opportunity]."
He continues: "If we had lot of matches, I can say maybe but now I can't say because there are lot of players coming for the match.
"I will try my best to do what I can do.
"God knows the right time and the best for all of us. If this is my right time, surely I will do better," he concluded.


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