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Nigeria announce final Afcon squad of 23 players

10:45 PM WAT 09/01/2013
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Stephen Keshi has released his final 23-man list of players that will challenge for the Africa Cup of Nations trophy in South Africa later this month

Nigeria announced their final Africa Cup of Nations squad on Wednesday ahead of the international friendly against Cape Verde.

There was nothing strange in the squad as Keshi kept faith with many of the players that played in the final Afcon qualifier against Liberia in October 2012.

However, notably missing from the squad is new sensation Bright Dike who scored in the 1-1 draw against Catalonia on January 2.

Stephen Keshi's squad consists of six players based in the Nigeria Premier League, a bold attempt to give locally based players a greater sense of belonging in the national side. The remaining players are based abroad.

Chelsea duo John Obi Mikel and Victor Moses make the team as well as forwards Ikechukwu Uche, Ahmed Musa, Brown Ideye and Emmanuel Emenike.

In defence, captain Joseph Yobo leads the side as well as Efe Ambrose, Elderson Echiejile, Juwon Oshaniwa and youngster Kenneth Omeruo who broke into the side after making his debut in the game against Catalonia.

Midfielders are Obiorah Nwankwo, Ogenyi Onazi, Nosa Igiebor and Fegor Ogude as well as goalkeepers Vincent Enyeama and Austin Ejide.

The players from the Nigerian league are goalkeeper Chigozie Agbim, defenders Azubuike Egwueke, Godfey Oboabona, midfielder Reuben Gabriel and forwards Ejike Uzoenyi and Sunday Mba.

Nigeria are drawn in Group C and they will start their campaign against Burkina Faso on January 21. Other group opponents are Zambia and Ethiopia.

 Name Club
 Goalkeepers: 
Vincent Enyeama Maccabi Tel Aviv
Austin Ejide Hapoel Be’er Sheba
Chigozie Agbim Enugu Rangers
 Defenders: 
Elderson Echiejile FC Braga
Juwon Oshaniwa Ashdod FC
Joseph Yobo Fenerbahce
Efe Ambrose Celtic FC
Azubuike Egwuekwe Warri Wolves
 Kenneth Omeruo ADO Den Haag
Godfrey Oboabona Sunshine Stars
 Midfielders: 
John Mikel Obi Chelsea FC
Nosa Igiebor Real Betis
Ogenyi Onazi SS Lazio
Obiorah Nwankwo Calcio Padova
Fegor Ogude Valerenga FC
Reuben Gabriel Kano Pillars
  Forwards: 
Ahmed MusaCSKA Moscow
Emmanuel EmenikeSpartak Moscow
Brown IdeyeDynamo Kyiv
Victor MosesChelsea FC
Ikechukwu UcheVillarreal FC
Ejike UzoenyiEnugu Rangers
Sunday MbaEnugu Rangers