Onobi is not Mikel’s replacement, says Oliseh

Paul Onobi, Pic: Goal.com
Super Eagles coach, Sunday Oliseh says Sunshine Stars midfielder, Paul Onobi is not a replacement for John Mikel Obi.

Oliseh, speaking after last Tuesday’s 2-0 win over Swaziland told a packed press conference that no one has a place in the team so he would not dwell on that.

He took time to react to talks that Chelsea based Mikel Obi was dropped for Onobi

“He did not play at the expense of anybody and we must be realistic, nobody has a place here. So if you are saying he played at the expense of somebody, I do not agree with that,” Oliseh said, obviously reacting to a question from ITV’s Kola Daniel who opined that Onobi started the game at the expense of John Mikel Obi.

Oliseh went ahead to give plaudits to the Sunshine Stars midfielder.

“He is a home star and I said it when it took the job I said I don’t care where you play your football. If you are good enough and can adapt to our tactics then you will play.

“The fact that he played against Swaziland is a vindication of that philosophy we are putting into play,” Oliseh said.

“The thing I like about him is that he is solid, strong on the man, can play, is clairvoyant and is very hungry, which is what we need now.”

After a dour display against Swaziland in the first leg that ended goaless, Oliseh tweaked his starting eleven fielding the likes of Paul Onobi (Sunshine Stars), Austin Oboroakpor (Abia Warriors) and Chima Akas (Sharks) with Enyimba’s Ezekiel Bassey coming on as a late substitute.

Nigeria are now through to the next stage of the FIFA 2018 World Cup Qualifiers.

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