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Why Ademola Lookman was dropped from Eagles AFCON squad



Ademola-Lookman-Everton topnaija

Former Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr, listed Leicester City’s Ademola Lookman in his initial 40-man provisional squad list for the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, it has been revealed.

Lookman, a former England youth international who plays as a winger for Premier League club Leicester City, on loan from RB Leipzig, applied to switch his allegiance to the country of his parents’ nationality in October.

The 24-year-old, who was born in England and played for them at U-19, U-20 and U-21 levels, helping them win the U-20 World Cup in 2017, was, however, left out of Nigeria’s final 28-man squad released by Austin Eguavoen last week.

The Leicester City forward scored the winner for the Foxes as they defeated Liverpool 1-0 at the King Power Stadium in a Premier League clash on Tuesday.

According to a document made available to PUNCH Sports Extra on Wednesday, Rohr also named little-known 28-year-old Amachi Iwuji of Al Masry in Egypt, Valentine Ozonwafor, Peter Olayinka, Semi Ajayi, Tyronne Ebuehi, Calvin Bassey, Kingsley Michael and Henry Onyekuru in his provisional squad.

Austin Eguavoen, who replaced Rohr after five years in charge of the team, however excluded the eight listed players along with Innocent Bonke, Kevin Akpoguma, Paul Onuachu and Samuel Kalu from the squad and included two players out of the initial provisional squad for the forthcoming tournament billed to kick off January 9 in Cameroon.

The players are Huesca midfielder Kelechi Nwakali and Orlando Pirates midfielder Olisa Ndah.

Nigeria are drawn in Group B alongside Egypt, Sudan and Guinea-Bissau.

The Eagles will commence their campaign against the Pharaohs on January 11 at the Roumde Adjia Stadium in Garoua.

Four days later, they face Sudan, before a clash against Guinea-Bissau on January 19 in Garoua.

Lookman made his senior debut in 2015, playing as a forward for Charlton Athletic of the Championship, and in January 2017 signed for Everton, who used him mainly as a winger. He has represented England from under-19 to under-21 levels, but has since applied to FIFA to change his national allegiance to Nigeria.

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