“The 2026 World Cup is my target”- Super Eagles captain Troost-Ekong

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Super Eagles captain William Troost-Ekong has stated that although he would like to play at the 2025 Africa Cup of Nations, his main target is the 2026 FIFA World Cup in Canada, Mexico, and United States, reports.

Troost-Ekong has been a regular for Nigeria since his debut under Gernot Rohr in 2015, and he has gone on to make 71 appearances for the Super Eagles since then.

Last year, Troost-Ekong experienced a lull internationally and it seemed like the PAOK man was drawing close to his international retirement. However, he made a remarkable comeback at the Africa Cup of Nations earlier this year. The 30-year-old defender played in all but one of Nigeria’s games in the competition, and he scored three goals in the run-up to their second-place finish. The PAOK star also won the Player of the Tournament award for his performance.

Troost-Ekong had been sidelined since February because of an injury he sustained at the AFCON. However, he could be back in time for the 2026 World Cup qualifiers fixture against South Africa.

Also, if he stays fit, Troost-Ekong could play a vital role in the upcoming 2025 AFCON qualifiers and maintain his place in Nigeria’s defence in the competition proper next year. However, while Troost-Ekong is looking forward to the AFCON, he has revealed that his main target is the next World Cup.

“Yes, I will be available for the 2025 AFCON but the 2026 World Cup is my main target and I feel I am coming to the best year of my career. I feel good physically and I am recovering well now. I feel more motivated than before and to really be part of history and join some of the great stars who have won one trophy before,” the former Watford man told Eagle FM, per Daily Post.

“So that is one thing I really want to achieve in my career. And I know I need to play well at club level to put myself in the picture and we have the chance to do so hopefully next year in Morocco. It will be better than we did in Cote d’Ivoire.”

If the Super Eagles want to play at the next World Cup, there has to be a significant turnaround. They currently sit third in the group, two points behind leaders Rwanda. They play South Africa next, and back-to-back wins could see them back on top and put them in the driver’s sit. Most importantly, the NFF have to announce a new coach soon, as the Super Eagles have been without a coach since Jose Peseiro left the job in February.