Samuel Chukwueze ruled out of 2026 World Cup qualifiers – Peseiro

The 2026 World Cup qualifiers next week will not feature Samuel Chukwueze and Victor Osimhen, as announced by Super Eagles head coach Jose Peseiro. 

Nigeria’s first qualifying match is scheduled for November 16 at Godswill Akpabio International Stadium in Uyo against Lesotho. On November 17, the team will play Zimbabwe at Huye Stadium in Butare, Rwanda.

Although it appeared unlikely that Osimhen, who sustained an injury during Nigeria’s friendly match against Saudi Arabia last month, would be unable to participate in the World Cup qualifying matches, Chukwueze was virtually guaranteed to win the battle for fitness to play after the AC Milan coach on Friday during his pre-match gathering. 

The Nigerian could be selected for Tuesday’s UEFA Champions League match against French giants Paris Saint-Germain ahead of their match against Udinese on Saturday.

Loftus-Cheek is okay and will be present. Pulisic will not be there as a precaution, both Pulistic and Chukwueze will be with PSG. Kjaer has a strong chance for Tuesday, according to Pioli.

Peseiro, meanwhile, stated he won’t be inviting both players to the World Cup qualifiers in a conversation with TV Play.

“We wish to avoid any risks, so Samuel Chukwueze and Victor Osimhen will not be called up during the next break,” Peseiro reportedly said to TV Play, via Milan Reports.

“I apologized deeply for their injuries; players are paid by their clubs, and we work with them on a regular basis.”

For the Super Eagles, Peseiro has plenty of attacking alternatives in the absence of Osimhen and Chukwueze.

After Osimhen, Victor Boniface, the forward for Bayer Leverkusen, is currently Nigeria’s second most important player after having had an incredible start to life in Germany. While Paul Onuachu is back to his best form at Trabzonspor in Turkey, Ademola Lookman has found his scoring touch at Atalanta.

On Sunday, Chuba Akpom scored twice to lead Ajax Amsterdam to their first back-to-back Eredivisie victories of the season.

In his first season in Ligue 1, Akor Adams has been nearly unstoppable, and Terem Moffi consistently delivers strong play for OGC Nice, a high-flying team.


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