Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr has named a young starting line-up to face Croatia in their crucial 2018 FIFA World Cup game on Saturday.
Nine debutants are in the XI as the Eagles will be hoping to win at the Kaliningrad Arena. Kickoff is at 8pm Nigerian Time.
Rohr’s XI sees him play it safe, lining up with Francis Uzoho in goal, with Leon Balogun and William Troost-Ekong in central defence.
Utility player Shehu Abdullahi starts from right back while Bryan Idowu will retain his place at the left-back position.
Tianjin Teda star John Obi Mikel will captain the Eagles for the match to be played in Kaliningrad and will function as the diamond.
Wilfred Ndidi and Oghenekaro Etebo will operate in defensive and offensive midfield respectively.
Alex Iwobi will play from the right side of attack with Victor Moses given the license to weave the magic from the left side of attack.
Coach Rohr has deployed just one striker in Odion Ighalo with talented playmaker John Obi Mikel playing the dual role of supporting the midfielders and providing another option in attack.
Argentina and Iceland are the other two teams in Group D and meet on Saturday afternoon in Moscow.
Nigeria starting line-up: Francis Uzoho, Shehu Abdullahi, Bryan Idowu, Leon Balogun, William Troost-Ekong, Wilfred Ndidi, John Obi Mikel, Oghenekaro Etebo, Victor Moses, Alex Iwobi
Reserves: Ikechukwu Ezenwa, Daniel Akpeyi, Elderdon Echiejille, Chidozie Awaziem, Tyronne Ebuehi, Kenneth Omeruo, John Ogu, Ogenyi Onazi, Joel Obi, Kelechi Iheanacho, Ahmed Musa, Simeon Nwankwo