26th January, 2012
A member of the home-based Super Eagles, Ibenegbu Ikechukwu, has declared that the local players are not scared of their foreign-based counterparts in the senior national team.
While refuting the claim in some quarters that the local players are inferior to the professional stars, the Heartland of Owerri playmaker argued that if the coaches of the Eagles can give them chances to prove themselves they have what it takes to outshine the Europe based players.
According to him, “we are not scared of the so called professionals. Since they are not coming with riffles or talisman to compete for shirts I don’t think there is any reason for us to fear them. Football is played with legs and we are not disabled.”
The former El-Kanemi Warriors player insisted that since the professionals started their football career in Nigeria before travelling out there is nothing that can make him or his teammates fret.
On the chances of making the Eagles’ squad for the 2013 Nations Cup qualifier against Rwanda next month, Ibenegbu boasted that the local players are ready to give the foreign-based star a good fight.
“We play for our respective clubs every week, unlike some of the professionals, who are not regulars in their teams. By the time they come to the Eagles’ camp they may be match-rusty and this will give us opportunity to outshine them,” he said.
He, however, said that with the mixture of some home-based players and the foreign-based stars, he sees Nigeria beating Rwanda in the qualifying match.