Cooper: Awoniyi Aggravates Injury, May Need Surgery


Super Eagles striker Taiwo Awoniyi may need to go under doctor’s knives after he aggravated an injury he sustained.

The Nigerian who has a 50-50 Chance of playing against Aston Villa at the City Ground on Sunday afternoon, could be ruled out of Nigeria’s World Cup qualifiers against Lesotho and Zimbabwe.

Recall he missed Nigeria’s international friendly games against Saudi Arabia and Mozambique in Portugal last month.

Giving an update on his team, “Taiwo is a player we have to manage. He’s in a bit of a complex situation with his injury. It’s an ongoing one, and it will be for a little while,” Cooper said.

“It’s frustrating, for him more than anyone else. He was doing so well and this has held him back.

“It’s not been as simple as he’s back training and he’s fully fit. It’s something that is going to be a managing process for a little bit of time now.

“We’ll see if he is available against Aston Villa. We hope he is, but it could go either way.”

He added: “I am not sure that he will need surgery down the line, but it is not a straightforward injury, it has also aggravated an injury he had last year. He can have indifferent days (with the injury) and it is annoying for him.

“It is something we will have to take day by day. He has good support around him, in terms of the medical staff we have, and hopefully, he will be able to play more often than not.

“The question of international duty is a conversation for next week. At the moment we are just focusing on what we might be able to get out of him.”