Peseiro names one absent Super Eagles player who would have made the difference at 2023 AFCON 

Published: March 12, 2024
Peseiro names one absent Super Eagles player who would have made the difference at 2023 AFCON 

Jose Peseiro believes Victor Boniface would have made the difference at the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations if not for an injury that ruled him out of the competition. 

The Bayer Leverkusen striker was initially named in Nigeria's final squad for the tournament in Ivory Coast but had to withdraw from the roster after suffering an injury to his groin during Nigeria's pre-Africa Cup of Nations training camp in Abu Dhabi. 

Boniface was supposed to play an important role for the Super Eagles at the 2023 AFCON and Peseiro's plan was to use a system that would have seen the 23-year-old partner Victor Osimhen in a two-man attack.

He was in brilliant form before the tournament in Ivory Coast, registering 24 goal involvements (16 goals, 8 assists) in 23 all-competition appearances for Bayer Leverkusen.

Apart from his goals and assists, Boniface offers versatility as he is comfortable playing on both flanks. 

Peseiro, now a free agent following the expiry of his contract with the Nigeria Football Federation at the end of last month, reckons Nigeria would have won the Africa Cup of Nations if Boniface was available for selection. 

In quotes relayed by AfricafootUnited, Peseiro said in a television interview in Portugal: "I will say that Boniface would have made the difference without injury.

"He was very confident and can play comfortably in our two-man attacking style. He can also play on both sides of the strikers and that would have made him our invisible arc in the tournament.

"Our options to refine our style were limited in his absence."

Terem Moffi was drafted in as a replacement for Boniface but the OGC Nice forward logged only fourteen minutes throughout the tournament. 

Igho Kingsley 


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