Gernot Rohr opens World Cup door to Obafemi Martins

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EPA/ROMAN PILIPEY
The 33-year-old has been impressive for the Flower of Shanghai and the Super Eagles gaffer is open to welcome him back into the fold

Gernot Rohr has hinted at in-form Shanghai Shenhua forward, Obafemi Martins getting a chance to feature for Nigeria at the World Cup next year.

Martins has scored 16 goals in 39 appearances since he teamed up with the Chinese outfit in 2016 from Seattle Sounders.

The 33-year-old scored twice to lead Wu Jingui’s side to a fourth Chinese FA Cup title on Sunday after they defeated Shanghai SIPG on a 3-3 aggregate.

And the German tactician is upbeat that the addition of the former Newcastle United striker will increase competition in the attacking department of the team.

“Yes, the door is open to all our best players, including Martins. He is scoring a lot of goals and we need to get competition for all the positions, especially centre-forward,” Rohr told KweseEspn.

"For now, we have Kelechi [Iheanacho] who is playing not all the time. [But ] we played Kelechi against Argentina and he did well.

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“Then Anthony [Nwakaeme] also did well against Algeria and [Odion] Ighalo, who is injured now, did very well against Cameroon. But we have also other players, like the young boy [Victor] Osimhen, and we have to look everywhere.

"We have a lot of opportunities for the strikers, and so Martins, if he is scoring goals, will be welcome."

The Super Eagles will know their foes at the World Cup on Friday when the draw for Russia 2018 will be made.

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