It's telling that there should be such a strong reaction to an uncapped player being overlooked, but at this point it is the frequency with which Super Eagles boss Gernot Rohr has snubbed Hammarby starlet Akinkunmi Amoo that is the real story.
The multi-functional player certainly polarises opinion. His supporters view his skillset as almost unique in the Super Eagles game. He is a silky ball carrier with an eye for a pass and a dangling leg that opponents cannot resist taking a swipe at.
His goals have helped keep Hammarby in a competitions and they could give Nigeria an edge too. His all-round statistics since last season has been outstanding.
Rohr hasn't acknowledged Amoo's talents, he does not seem to hold the playmaker in high regard.
While Rohr may says he wants a free-flowing attacking line-up, the players' roles within his system are relatively rigid. His wingers play high, wide and fast. It's position that is incredibly well stocked with players who do exactly what the Franco-German likes. Samuel Chukwueze, Samuel Kalu, Moses Simon, Alex Iwobi, Henry Onyekuru, Chidera Ejuke and Ahmed Musa are trusted by Rohr.
But Amoo should not be considered in the same category as these players. He is not a winger and he certainly is not a striker who is being asked to play wide. He is a drifter whose strength lies in cutting infield. He can easily play in a traditional No 10 role - a tactic Rohr rarely adopts - but he is undeniably at his best when driving in from out. He could give Nigeria something different, but not in the eyes of the Super Eagles manager.
If the former Golden Eaglets ace wants to play for his country, his only hope may be convincing Rohr he is worthy of a central position where he can compete.
Timing is very important in sports. It's becoming more and more apparent that something will need to change for Amoo to be called up. Whether that is a positional switch or move to a bigger club where the same level of performances become significantly harder to ignore or, dare I say it, a change of Nigeria manager.
Content created and supplied by: AdemetanAbayomi (via Opera News )