AFCON: ‘Two times Troost-Ekong said Onyeka is tired’ – Peseiro explains angry moment at Brentford midfielder

Super Eagles coach, Jose Peseiro has explained why he was angry at Frank Onyeka towards the closing stage of Nigeria’s 2023 AFCON Cup of Nations quarter-final 1-0 win over Angola on Friday evening.

Peseiro admitted that he made an unplanned substitution, bringing on Joe Aribo to replace Onyeka in the 87th minute of the encounter between Nigeria and Angola, based on the advice of his captain for the game, William Troost-Ekong.

According to him, Troost-Ekong noticed that the Brentford midfielder was not playing at full throttle because of a shoulder injury he could not shake off during the match.

The 63-year-old felt ‘angry’ because Onyeka claimed that he was not fatigued and decided to stay on the pitch.

Speaking to reporters at his post-match press conference, Peseiro said: “Before the break, I called Iwobi and Onyeka, asked them who is more tired so I can bring in one substitute. No one said I’m tired.

“After five minutes, Ekong came to tell me Onyeka cannot continue. Ekong informed me you must change Onyeka.

“From my bench, it’s better I keep Iwobi, put Yusuf, and Onyeka goes out, but I know all the players want to complete the game.

“I was angry at that moment. Two times Ekong said Onyeka is tired due to the pain in the shoulder. But I asked him five minutes before, not 10, 15 or 20 minutes, he said he was okay, it’s happening in football.

“The captain on the pitch can inform me about some situations – some players tired, some players feeling some pain.”