As at Tuesday afternoon, Head Coach Sunday Oliseh was expecting only three players in the Super Eagles camp as preparations were intensified for Friday’s 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying match against Swaziland in Lobamba on Friday.
In camp are Captain Ahmed Musa, goalkeepers Carl Ikeme, Ikechukwu Ezenwa and Dele Alampasu, defenders Efe Ambrose, Austin Oboroakpo, Chima Akas, Jamiu Alimi, Kalu Orji, Godfrey Oboabona, Wilfred Ndidi and Elderson Echiejile, midfielders Paul Onobi, John Mikel Obi, Sylvester Igbonu and Rabiu Ibrahim, and forwards Odion Ighalo, Ezekiel Bassey, Kelechi Iheanacho, Alex Iwobi and Moses Simon.
Portugal –based defender Abdullahi Shehu, midfielder Ogenyi Onazi and US –based forward Obafemi Martins were being expected on Tuesday night.
The strike embarked upon by workers of Lufthansa Airlines delayed the arrival of most of the players, as the Nigeria Football Federation had to quickly re-book players on British Airways.
Officials of the National Football Association of Swaziland confirmed to the NFF on Tuesday that landing permit for the chartered flight, which will fly the Nigeria delegation to Swaziland, has been secured.
The ARIK Air Boeing 737-800 aircraft is expected to depart from the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja at 7am on Thursday, and will land at the Matsapha International Airport by 2pm same day.
Super Eagles’ players and officials will stay at The Sun Hotels, while the official training at the Somhlolo National Stadium, Lobamba has been set for 7pm on Thursday.
The match between the Super Eagles and the Sihlangu Somnikati will kick off at 7pm on Friday, 13th November, with Germain Koole of Benin Republic as the referee. He will be assisted by compatriots Bienvenu Dina, Sena Ulrich Houedin and Gustave Eugene Tohouegnon as assistant 1, assistant 2 and fourth official respectively.
Mohamed Bahou from Morocco will be the referee assessor with Zambian Joseph Nkole as match commissioner.
The Nigeria delegation will depart Swaziland immediately after the match and fly direct to Port Harcourt.
Both teams will clash in Port Harcourt on Tuesday, 17th November, with the winner going straight into the 20 –team, mini-league phase beginning next year.