St James' Park, Newcastle

Next Game

Newcastle v Everton

Sunday, 28 December 2014, 16:15

Barclays Prem

Goodison Park

Last Game

Everton 0 - 1 Stoke

Friday, 26 December 2014, 15:00

Barclays Prem

Anichebe: Club before country

Victor Anichebe says "the time is not right" to return to international football with Nigeria.

Last Updated: 01/05/13 at 13:23 Post Comment

Victor Anichebe: More than 18 months since last international appearance

Victor Anichebe: More than 18 months since last international appearance

The Everton striker last played for his country in September 2011, when a groin injury suffered against Madagascar kept him out for four months.

Anichebe felt his club offered greater support than the Nigerian Football Federation during his time in the treatment room and has resisted recent overtures from manager Stephen Keshi to resume his international career.

Nigeria's loss has been Everton's gain, and the 25-year-old has established himself as Goodison Park's No.1 striker in recent months following Nikica Jelavic's dip in form.

Anichebe told the club website: "I have always been proud to represent my country but it is becoming more and more evident that with the injuries I have had over the last two years or so, I have to manage my body accordingly.

"That's why I feel the best thing for me at the moment is to concentrate on club football.

"Without club football there is no international football and everyone at Everton was with me every step of the way during my injuries and rehabilitation and so I owe it to the club to manage myself correctly.

"I didn't feel that the Nigerian Football Federation was there for me the in the same manner, which was especially disappointing given that I got the injury representing my country.

"But I don't blame anyone for this nor do I have any issues with anybody from the NFF or Stephen Keshi our coach."

Nigeria won this year's Africa Cup of Nations without Anichebe, who said: "If I had gone, would I be playing for my club at the level I am now? Perhaps not, so it worked out well for both sides.

"The time is just not right for me to resume my international career as of yet but I would certainly love to represent my country in the none too distant future."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

really enjoyed this. Thanks F365 for another year of work avoidance - happy Christmas.

megabrow (cufc)
Our Person Of The Year: Alan Pardew

I

m no Sam Fan and this article sums him up beautifully. I always like to imagine that when he watches anything on TV and hears clapping, he stands up and aknowledges the applause, thinking its for him!

cozens
Football Managers On TV: Sam Allardyce

N

ah, Fergie is just having another pop at Rooney. He just wants to put him down whenever he gets a chance. Rooney is by far the best English player. Carrick is not far behind, mind. However, by elevating Carrick like that, Sir is having a dig at Wayne. Fergie is well-known for mind games like that. Good to see he's still feisty.

timbo
Van Gaal will thrive - Ferguson

Footer 365

Jose Mourinho: It's only a matter of time before John Terry gets new contract

John Terry will definitely stay at Chelsea beyond the end of his current deal, Jose Mourinho says.

Chelsea striker Fernando Torres to make permanent move to AC Milan ahead of Atletico Madrid return

Fernando Torres will join Milan permanently on January 5 ahead of his expected return to Atletico Madrid.

Neil Warnock sacked by Crystal Palace after run of one win in 12 games

Neil Warnock has been sacked as manager of Crystal Palace, with Keith Millen placed in charge for Sunday's trip to QPR.

Mail Box

Van Gaal's Half-Term Report Card...

One Man United fan isn't happy with the rate the team is progressing under Louis van Gaal, while the mailbox also wishes Liverpool fans a Merry Mid-Table Christmas...

Hang On, Rafa's Success Is No Fluke...

The afternoon mailbox kicks the morning mailbox's arse after claims that Rafa Benitez has fluked his success. Plus, big talk about Liverpool's progress and lots more...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property