Super Falcons head coach Kadiri Ikhana has declared he expects at least 8 foreign-based players to soon join the team currently sweating it out in at the Abuja camp ahead of the African Women’s Championship set to hold in Equatorial Guinea.
The coach, who confirmed he is in constant touch with officials of the Nigeria Football Federation, however stated that he is yet to make up his mind on who the invited players will be.
“I cannot confirm the number of foreign-based players that will be invited to camp. I am working closely with the technical department of the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) to ensure that we invite the best players.
“Players like Perpetua Nkwocha, Rita Chikwelu, and Onome Ebi will be invited alongside others. I think we will invite at least eight more players who play outside Nigeria to join those we have in camp now,” Ikhana said.
“We do not want to invite players just because they play in foreign leagues. We want to invite players who are in form and play regular competitive matches for their clubs.”
He added: “The tournament is just around the corner and we need to have the players join the team in camp at least three weeks to the tournament. We will most likely identify the players we need in a few days and write to their clubs this week so they can be released in time to join us.”
Ikhana was quick to add that he expects players to fight for the chance to be in his final team to participate in Africa’s biggest tournament for women, saying that no player is assured an automatic place in the final squad.
“The competition in the squad is very tough. Most of the ladies who play at home are very talented and want to make the team.
“The foreign-based players will have to work very hard to displace the ladies already in camp because they are a very talented bunch.”
Meanwhile the coach has expressed satisfaction with the attitude of the 27 home-based players already one week old in camp.
“All the 27 players in camp have shown me that they want to be part of this team. I am very pleased with the level of discipline and commitment the ladies have shown. As a coach, I couldn’t have asked for more.”
The African Women’s Championship is billed to commence on October 28, 2012, with the final match to be played on November 11, 2012.