Arsenal of England midfielder, Alex Iwobi finally turned up at the Super Eagles’ camp in Asaba, Delta State on Wednesday afternoon, alongside Al-Nassr of Saudi Arabia attacker, Ahmed Musa and Bursaspor of Turkey defender, Shehu Abdullahi.
Iwobi had permission from Eagles’ coach, Gernot Rohr to arrive late, following his exertions with Arsenal in the Europa league final last week Wednesday, while the Muslim duo of Musa and Abdullahi were allowed delayed arrivals in order to spend time with their families at Eid-El-Fitri.
Iwobi’s arrival on Wednesday afternoon put a lie to earlier reports that he was billed to join the team in Ismailia, Egypt, where they are expected to land on Sunday, ahead of the opening match of this year’s Africa Cup of Nations on June 21.
Nigeria will tango debuting Burundi in their first match of AFCON 2019 the following day, June 22, ahead of which they will play two build-up matches, against Zimbabwe in Asaba on Saturday, and versus Senegal in Ismailia on June 16, and 24 hours later storm Alexandria, the venue of all their Group B matches.
The arrivals of Iwobi, Musa and Abdullahi took the number of players in the Eagles’ camp to 23, as at Wednesday, with only Odion Jude Ighalo and William Troost-Ekong still being expected at that point.
The new arrivals were all received with huge cheers from their Eagles’ teammates, who were heading for lunch at the time the much-awaited trio popped into the camp out of the blue.
Iwobi, Musa and Abdullahi also arrived early enough to be part of day’s only training session at Stephen Keshi Stadium, with the gates thrown open at 4:15 for an influx of soccer fans and the media.
The media are also expected to turn up in large numbers for a press conference at Golden Tulip Hotel, Asaba on Thursday at 11:30am.