According to Sports Extra, Maduka Okoye is ready to be officially named as Super Eagles No.1.
The Fortuna Dusseldorf B team goalkeeper was handed his maiden invitation to the Eagles squad for the September 10 international friendly against Ukraine in Dnipro after Daniel Akpeyi was dropped for the game.
“I’m very delighted, I can’t wait to join the squad for the game against Ukraine next month,” he told Sports Extra exclusively.
“I’m very excited, can’t express my feelings and how happy I am. This is a dream come true.”
Okoye will be up against Ikechukwu Ezenwa and Francis Uzoho for the Ukraine friendly and he adds that he will give everything to claim the first choice spot.
“Competition can only be a good thing,” the 19-year-old said.
“The important thing is that I‘ll get to know my new teammates and the coaches. I‘ll give more than 100 per cent. So I‘ll be a good competitor for Uzoho and Ezenwa.
“It can only breed better performances from us. It certainly keeps you checking over your shoulders and making sure you are doing as well as you can.
“I aspire to be the best I can be and if that means I become Eagles’ No.1, then I will wear the badge on my heart. It is what I want to be. I want to be the best I can.”
Okoye added that it was not a tough decision pledging his allegiance to Nigeria, admitting that it’s always been his dream.
“No it was not, I didn’t have to think about it. It’s a dream that I’ve been chasing since a little boy, it came from my heart to say ‘yes’ and I did.
“I have always followed Nigerian football and I must say Jay Jay (Austin Okocha) was fantastic during his days.
“My father always told me how good Emmanuel Okala was and he showed me how he moved and played between the sticks in some old video clips.”
This article was most recently revised and updated 3 years ago