I missed Shola Ameobi at AFCON – Keshi

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Coach Keshi says he wishes Shola Ameobi was part of the victorious Nigerian team.

Super Eagles Coach, Stephen Keshi, said on Monday that he missed Newcastle Ace,Shola Ameobi, at the just concluded 2013 African Cup of Nations , AFCON, in South Africa.

“Honestly speaking, I missed Shola Ameobi (at the AFCON). In the game against Venezuela, he had a different presence in the locker room, he came in with this coaching ability and togetherness, when he talks to these boys they listen. This was the first time he was coming,” he said.

The coach, who is known to be a firm believer in the striker’s ability, off and on the pitch, said Ameobi would have been his strong asset on the pitch.

“This was what I was looking for on the pitch, somebody who could talk for me on the field, because I know what I did as a captain on the pitch,” he said.

Keshi said Ameobi’s contract with his English club, Newcastle United, denied him a spot at the just concluded tournament.

“He was really, really ready to come, but what was on his contract denied him from coming,” Keshi said.

The Super Eagles coach said Nigerians should brace for new call ups in the team.

“We are open to fresh options for the team. We will allow additional good players in the team, those who can contribute positively to the team.

“We will give opportunity to them as Nigerians to come and show what they can contribute to make the team better,” Coach Keshi said.

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