Southampton midfielder, Joe Aribo, asked to excused from the Super Eagles squad to face Algeria, so they can continue to settle well at his new club.
Aribo was dropped by head coach Jose Peseiro from the 22-man squad for the friendly.
A team official told Punch Sports Extra exclusively that the midfielder asked to be excused from the game to settle in well at his new club.
“The coach (Jose Peseiro) wants to test some other players in the central midfield position and that’s why Raphael Onyedika was invited,” our source said.
“Also, his (Aribo) exclusion is to help him settle in well at his new club though there are some personal issues he wants to sort out.”
Meanwhile, Southampton coach, Ralph Hasenhuttl, believes the international break came at a perfect time for the Saints to analyse their recent performances and together work on their performances.
“It would be good if everybody is here but it isn’t. We will have some players here, I think seven or eight, but still a few ones that started here today,” Hasenhuttl said.