The Super Eagles last two trainings behind closed doors have given a better insight to how Gernot Rohr plans to line up his team against ambitious home team Benin tomorrow in Porto-Novo.
The pragmatic Franco-German coach will again not come up with many surprises as he keeps faith with his tried and trusted players in a game he has made it clear they must not lose.
The versatile Rangers of Scotland star Joe Aribo could well be one of the players to start from the bench after Everton ace Alex Iwobi made it clear he does not enjoy playing on the left wing.
Should Iwobi get his wish for the No 10 role, Aribo will have to drop out for Wilfred Ndidi and Oghenekaro Etebo to be the two holding midfielders, while Samuel Chukwueze and most probably Henry Onyekuru play on the flanks to assist striker Victor Osimhen in Rohr’s favoured 4-2-3-1 formation.
The back four is already settled – fullbacks Zaidu Sanusi and Ola Aina with ‘The Oyibo Wall’ of Leon Balogun and William Ekong back in business.
Maduka Okoye, who has enjoyed a fine run in the Dutch league with Sparta Rotterdam, will be No 1 ahead of comebacking Francis Uzoho.
Super Eagles likely Starting XI vs Benin (4-2-3-1)
Maduka Okoye – Zaidu Sanusi, Ola Aina, Leon Balogun, William Ekong (Captain) – Wilfred Ndidi, Oghenekaro Etebo – Alex Iwobi, Henry Onyekuru, Samuel Chukwueze – Victor Osimhen