FIFA U-17 World Cup: Nigerian born West Ham goalkeeper arrives Eaglets camp

Lekan Sowande, Abuja


Former Chelsea and now West Ham teenage goalkeeper, Daniel Oluwagbolade Jinadu has arrived Nigeria to join the Golden Eaglets currently preparing for the 2019 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

The 2002-born player landed in the Nigerian capital, Abuja on Wednesday morning and took part in the training session at the training pitch of the Moshood Kashimawo Abiola Stadium, Abuja.

Jinadu told Voice of Nigeria that he was very excited coming to Nigeria, to represent his fatherland.

“My first experience was good, the training was very intense and the qualities of players are good. It’s good to come to my fatherland and I am very excited to be part of the generation of players,” he said.

It would be recalled that the Nigerian Federation contacted his Premier League club West Ham via a letter in August requesting for the release of Jinadu for Nigeria Under-17 Men’s Team Trials.

Coach Manu Garba and his assistants will be happy to have the highly-rated goalkeeper in their final lap of camping because according to the head coach, the department was one of the problem areas during the Under-17 AFCON and regional qualifiers, with the team conceding many goals.

Born in Nigeria, Jinadu has caps for England’s Under-15 and Under-16 national teams but he’s not provisionally cap-tied to the European nation as the caps were earned in friendly matches.

He was named in West Ham Under-23 match day squad when they faced Newcastle United in the Premier League 2 in August.

His arrival in Abuja has therefore ended speculation over his international future.

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s Under-17 national team will on October 8, leave the shores of the country to Brazil in continuation of their preparations for the 2019 FIFA Under-17 World Cup later this month.

Coach Manu Garba said a total of 30 players will take part in the training tour in Sao Paulo, and the number will be reduced to the final 21 players for the championship slated to hold from October 26, to November 17, 2019.

The Coach said that the participation of the team at the just concluded UEFA/CAF Tournament in Turkey yielded fruitful results.

The Nigerian side beat host, Turkey 2-0, defeated Guatemala 5-1, but lost 4-2 to African rival, Senegal in the third match.

The Eaglets who face Hungary in their opening match on October 26, also have Ecuador and Australia to contend with in the group B stage of the FIFA World Tournament in Brazil.

Coach Garba said he and his backroom staff are working hard to get the clips of how the teams play.

“As at now, we don’t have much about the teams, but we have sent our search team to get us the video clips of how they play,” Garba said.

Hosts Brazil is in Group A with Canada, New Zealand and Angola, while Group C has Haiti, Korea Republic, France and Chile.

Group D has Senegal, the U.S., Japan and the Netherlands, Group E has Spain, Argentina, Cameroon and Tajikistan, while Group F has Italy, Paraguay, Mexico and Solomon Islands.