I will step out of Echiejile’s shadow
Juwon Oshaniwa has told AfricanFootball.com he is fully prepared to step in for injured Elderson Echiejile at the World Cup. FC Ashdod of Israel defender Oshaniwa will now be Nigeria’s first-choice left back in Brazil after a muscle tear ruled out AS Monaco ace Elderson from the tournament. “I have been a positive person all my life and that has been working for me. I am ready as ever to put in my best for Nigeria in Brazil,” Oshaniwa told AfricanFootball.com
I know what is expected of me and I am ready to deliver for Nigeria by God’s grace” – Oshaniwa.
The former Sharks star started his first match for the African champions in a final World Cup warm-up match against the United States of America.
It was his first match since he replaced injured Elderson in the final of the African Cup of Nations against Burkina Faso in February 2013.
How do you feel making the team to the World Cup?
OSHANIWA: It is great and I am so happy to make the team.
You won AFCON 2013, was at FIFA Confederations Cup in Brazil, now the World Cup. Are you fulfilled?
The World Cup is the biggest stage in the world of football, every player wants to be there, but not everyone gets the chance. Going to the World Cup is a dream come true for me.
How was it in the team the day coach Keshi announced his final squad for the World Cup?
It was okay, but there was some anxiety among the players as we all waited for the list.
Iran, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Argentina are in same group with Nigeria, do you see Eagles surviving this group and going on to the knockout stage?
We will just take it one game after the other. We will approach every game as if it’s our last so as to survive the group.
The Eagles under Keshi have been flying, what are the secrets?
It has been God and togetherness all the way.
Which is your most memorable game for Nigeria?
That was the final match of the AFCON 2013. It was my first match in that tournament, we won and lifted the trophy.
Who are the strikers you think will be the most difficult to mark out for the Eagles – Edin Dzeko, Sergio Aguero or Lionel Messi?
We are professionals and play against the best strikers in the world in our clubs week in, week out. We are not afraid of any striker at the World Cup. We are equal to the task.