BY KUNLE SOLAJA.
From the current assembly of the Super Eagles, two players are at risk of missing the return leg match against Guinea Bissau if they are cautioned in the first leg match of the Group A of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations holding in Abuja next Friday.
The players are Goalkeeper Francis Uzoho and defender, Calvin Bassey of FC Ajax of the Netherlands. Both players have obtained a caution each in the preceding matches.
Uzoho was cautioned in the 86th minute of the opening Grade A match with Sierra Leone in Abuja last year June 9. It was in the same match that Calvin Bassey got a yellow card in the 82nd minute.
A third player who also got a yellow card, Oghenekaro Etebo in the match with Sierra Leone, is not called up for the Guinea Bissau game.
Nigeria will host Guinea Bissau on Friday in Abuja while the reversed fixture holds next Monday at Estadio 24 de Setembro in Bissau.
Article 42.1 of the Regulations for the Africa Cup of Nations has it that “a player who receives two cautions in the series shall be automatically suspended from playing the following match.”
Similar provisions exist in the regulations for the qualifying series of the World Cup. Sports Village Square recalls that failure to abide with the provisions of the Regulations cost Nigeria the 2018 World Cup qualifying match with Algeria when the 1-1 draw was forfeited owing to the fielding of ineligible Shehu Abdulahi who had had two cautions preceding the game.