Afcon 2021: Ranking Nigeria’s Centre Forward Options

Afcon 2021: Ranking Nigeria’s Centre Forward Options

6 – Henry Onyekuru

Admittedly more suited to a wide berth, Onyekuru could play centrally if need be.

While the Olympiacos man is unlikely to feature down the middle at the Africa Cup of Nations, it is a nice option to have for coach Augustine Eguavoen.

5 – Ahmed Musa

Despite the aversion to Musa’s continued Nigeria involvement, the country’s latest centurion can fill in down the middle when necessary.

The former Leicester City man featured centrally in the last games under Gernot Rohr—albeit in tandem with a true centre-forward—but he has played that role in the past and can be a stop-gap there in Cameroon.

4 – Peter Olayinka

Another attacker capable of playing down the middle, Olayinka’s versatility means he can deputise at centre-forward.

The Slavia Prague man can play up front by himself or next to another frontman, offering Eguavoen a variety of tactical options at the finals.

3 – Kelechi Iheanacho

While Seniorman is at his best when he plays alongside a pure number nine, he is capable of doing damage if he leads the line.

Of course, Nigeria will not get the full Iheanacho experience in that role, but it could be explored by Eguavoen if need be.

2 – Sadiq Umar

At the time of writing, the Almeria frontman is one of two true centre-forward options available to Eguavoen.

Having said that, the towering striker’s game is not limited to putting the ball in the back of the net alone, as he retains an interest in being involved in play.

1 – Taiwo Awoniyi

With Victor Osimhen a coronavirus absentee, Odion Ighalo—at the time of writing—out of the squad on a technicality and Emmanuel Dennis’ non-participation already confirmed, Awoniyi is expected to lead the line in Cameroon.

The Union Berlin frontman has netted almost 40 percent of his side’s goals in the Bundesliga and he could light up the finals for the Super Eagles if he gets ample service.

Mr Ejump

Posted Jan 11th, 2022


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