Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr believes striker Simeon Nwankwo is vital to his aim of overhauling his team’s playing style.
Nwankwo scored vital goals when his Italian side Crotone were battling to escape relegation last season. Unfortunately the Sharks placed 18th in the Serie A table and dropped to Serie B.
The 6 ft 6in forward was restricted to cameo appearances at the 2018 World Cup in Russia and could not showcase his talent to the world.
Following the World Cup fall out coupled with Victor Moses’ retirement from international football, Rohr now says he wants Simy to spearhead his attack
Speaking with reporters in Lagos on Friday, the German tactician said he decided to name the gangly player in his 24-man squad for the September 7 Cameroon 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Seychelles despite plying his trade in the lower division because he believes in him.
He is banking on the former Gil Vicente star’s technical ability, strength, size and aerial threat to count during the AFCON qualifiers.
Nigeria lost their first game 2-0 to South Africa in Uyo last year, and Rohr is looking to beat minnows Seychelles to keep qualification hopes alive.
“We saw many teams at the World Cup with big and tall strikers,” the 65-year-old said.
“Simy can do that, hence I invited him (for the match against Seychelles).”
Rohr said the 26-year-old decided to stay at Crotone to help them gain promotion back to the Serie A because the Pythagoreans wanted a big transfer fee from the clubs who wanted him. Reports claimed Crotone slapped €15m price tag on the head of their prized player.
“He has to stay at Crotone for the moment,” Rohr said.