Alex Iwobi (left) in tangle against Croatia with Mikel watching at the 2018 World Cup. He was not at his best in Russia.

Arsenal forward Alex Iwobi, Moses Simon from La Liga side Levante as well as Samuel Kalu are locked in a Titanic battle for who will start for the Super Eagles against Libya on Saturday.

Kalu from French Ligue 1 club Bordeaux impressed on his debut against Seychelles last month in the absence of both Iwobi, who was ill then, and the injured Simon.

Stand-in captain Ahmed Musa will be expected to start for the Eagles on the right side of attack going by Gernot Rohr’s preferred formation of 4-2-3-1.

This means that Iwobi, Simon and Kalu will go head-to-head to start on the left.

On the basis that Rohr has been loyal to the players he has worked with the longest, it will therefore be a straight shootout between Iwobi and Moses Simon with Kalu a welcomed option.

Iwobi has defied critics with a good run at Arsenal after his critics predicted he will struggle under new manager Unai Emery.

This was after a laboured showing at his first World Cup in June.

Moses Simon (right) vs South Africa

There are even those who say he has played better with the Eagles than with his London club, scoring crucial goals against Zambia both in Ndola and Uyo to lift Nigeria to Russia 2018.

Moses Simon has also been an important part of Rohr’s Eagles and his importance in the plans of the Franco-German coach was underlined by the fact that the team waited till the very last minute to determine whether or not he will be fit to be on the flight to Russia 2018.

The former KAA Gent star has settled down nicely in La Liga, scoring on his debut for Levante and generally holding his own at his new club.

His speed and directness may well be what will unlock a highly organised back four of Libya beginning with the first game on Saturday in Uyo.

 

Kola Daniel in Uyo

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