SUPER Eagles captain Mikel Obi has denied reports that he is injured, saying he is ready for Sunday’s Russia 2018 World Cup qualifier against Zambia at the Levy Nwanawasa Stadium in Ndola, Zambia.
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte had told a press conference on Friday ahead of his team’s Premier League match against Hull City on Saturday that Mikel would not feature in the encounter, which the Blues eventually won 2-0 because the player had “a small muscular problem”.
“Conte rules John Terry out of tomorrow’s game. Mikel is also out with a small muscular problem,” the English giants wrote on their Twitter handle.
The development has sparked fears among the Eagles’ fans that the 2012 UEFA Champions League winner could miss the World Cup qualifier against Zambia.
Mikel has yet to play for Chelsea this season after helping Nigeria win bronze at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
However, the Nigeria Football Federation confirmed on Sunday the 29-year-old was fit and ready for the fixture against Chipolopolo.
Spokesman for the NFF Ademola Olajire said the player had spoken to the federation.
“I don’t know where the story about my being injured came from. I have no injury. All the other players and myself are fit and ready and we are determined to start the World Cup race on a winning note,” Olajire quoted Mikel as telling the Eagles’ Administrator Enebi Achor on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr and his assistants arrived in Abuja on Sunday ahead of the team’s preparations for the World Cup qualifier.
According the NFF, Rohr arrived in the country from France in company with his technical assistant Jean Luc Royer and video analyst Nabil Trabelsi.
The players are expected in camp from Monday with training sessions scheduled for morning and evening each day before their departure to Ndola on Friday.