Nigeria goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama has been ruled out of the Super Eagles friendly international match against South Africa on Sunday through injury.
The Nigerians will be taking on Bafana Bafana at the Mbombela Stadium in Nelspruit this weekend, but Lille keeper Enyeama is not travelling with the team, as he picked up an injury in his side’s 1-0 loss to Uganda in Uyo on Wednesday.
The 32-year-old first choice Super Eagles shot-stopper sustained a back injury, and will not be able to add to the 100th international cap that he earned against the Cranes earlier this week. He became only the second Nigerian to reach 100 appearances for the national team, following former captain Joseph Yobo reaching the milestone last year.
Stand-in Super Eagles coach Daniel Amokachi has given Warri Wolves keeper Daniel Akpeyi a call up to the national team to act as back up for the former Hapoel Tel Aviv player.
Enyeama was a crucial part of Nigeria’s title winning team at the 2013 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) in South Africa, captaining the side and leading by example with numerous game winning saves against top African opposition.
He then continued with his typical solid performances as the last line of defence for the Super Eagles, allowing them to qualify for the 2014 FIFA World Cup, where they progressed from the group stages before being knocked out by France in the second round.
Enyeama first debuted for the Nigerian national team in 2002, and has since seen his appearances rise to three digits for the Super Eagles. He has played in three FIFA World Cup tournaments (2002, 2010, and 2014), and several Nations Cup competitions.
His influence and experience will be missed when they take on South Africa this weekend, in an attempt to set the record straight against a Bafana team which contributed to Nigeria’s failure to qualify for the 2015 AFCON.
Enyeama is one match away from equalling Yobo’s record as the highest capped player for the Nigerian national team with 101 appearances, and he is expected to make the record his own in the near future with AFCON qualifiers for the 2017 competition beginning in June.