Having missed no less than 8 games for Nigeria before his 12 minutes against Liberia in a world cup qualifier last month , Samuel Kalu was fading from view in national team football.
Sickness and injuries haven’t been kind to the winger who plays with much polish when firing on full throttle.
He also featured for 18 minutes in the Super Eagles disgraceful 1:0 home loss to Central Africa Republic on the 7th of October. He would go on to be an unused substitution in the reverse world cup qualifier fixture where Balogun and Osimhen powered Nigeria to a 2 : 0 redemption victory.
But shouldn't Kalu be seeing more minutes for the Super Eagles?
These days, Gernot Rohr is spoilt for choice in most departments. I was reading an article that suggested Emmanuel Dennis will be overlooked again in upcoming qualifiers. If true, am I surprised? No.
With the way things are going, Nigeria fans will have to get used to the odd big name being overlooked in subsequent squads – such is now the glut of options available for the Super Eagles at this time.
If Kalu stays fit, he has a place in the Super Eagles and some players will have to make way. Kalu is a trusted Rohr soldier. He plays to instructions with discipline and a military style precision.
Admittedly the wings is a department where options appear more ubiquitous.
But no one will blame Rohr for going with players he knows and has worked with for a lengthy period.
I am praying that Kalu stays fit and healthy. He is such a valuable and mature winger who brings something different to the table.
The news of his goal against Montpellier in September in the France Ligue 1 was heartwarming (sadly he hasn't found the back of the net in 3 league games afterwards, having been benched in their last league match).
I hope for more of such headlines of Kalu hitting the net in weeks to come. If not, his position in the Super Eagles could become vulnerable.