Injured Francis Uzoho out of South Africa clash
Nigeria goalkeeper Francis Uzoho will miss the Super Eagles' 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against South Africa this month after picking up an injury in Elche's 5-1 defeat by Cadiz on Sunday.
A statement on the club's website notes that radiology tests have revealed the Deportivo La Coruna loanee has fractured his costal cartilage. He's set to be out for four weeks, and will not join the Super Eagles for the qualifier on November 17 at the FNB Stadium.
The news will come as a major setback to Gernot Rohr, who is already without the services of captain John Mikel Obi and suspended midfielder Wilfred Ndidi.
Uzoho, 20, has been Nigeria's first-choice goalkeeper since making his debut in the second half of a friendly against Argentina in Krasnodar in November 2017, with Nigeria winning the match 4-2.
In his absence, Ikechukwu Ezenwa would normally be expected to step up to the plate, but the Enyimba goalkeeper's lack of action over the last few months may open the door to other players to step in.
Uzoho had conceded five second-half goals - including four goals in 12 minutes - before picking up the injury in Elche's defeat, with his disappointing outing coming after a series of jittery showings for Nigeria.
The Super Eagles are not the only ones with injury concerns, and Bafana Bafana will be without injured midfield trio Dean Furman, Keagan Dolly and Kamohelo Mokotjo for the decisive qualifier.
Nigeria need a point in Johannesburg to qualify for their first AFCON since winning the title in South Africa in 2013, while Bafana would qualify with a win.