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Chelsea: Victor Moses may have to fly solo to set the example for Nigeria

Victor Moses has the chance to prove himself yet again at the World Cup. Chelsea’s right wing-back carried the load for Nigeria in their opener, and will be indispensable if the Super Eagles hope to reach the Round of 16.

After two seasons as Chelsea’s right wing-back, Victor Moses has much more pitch to cover at the World Cup. The Nigerian will be playing forward for his national team: possibly on the left wing, possibly the right side of the midfield, possibly right wing. In the opener against Croatia, he did it all. Regardless of what position the team sheet lists him as, he will be further forward than he would be at Chelsea.

With all the craziness at Stamford Bridge, Moses likely will be using this opportunity with the Super Eagles to showcase his ability up the pitch for Chelsea’s next manager, or his future club. Moses’ place at Chelsea is no more certain than anyone else’s. Two (or more) performances like the opener could invite some transfer offers.

Moses will be a key piece in Nigeria’s attacking play. They will need Moses to produce goals, assists and chances. In the qualifying leading up to this World Cup, Moses had three goals in four matches played. Moses will create chances. Whether his teammates finish those chances is another story. If they do not or can not, Gernot Rohr and the entire nation will look to Victor Moses to finish them himself.

A former Blue, Mikel John Obi, is the captain and leader amongst the Nigerians. Moses shares the responsibilties, though. Mikel and Moses are by far the most experienced players among a young Nigerian side. They know the international stage and have played at the highest levels of club football.

It will be up to them to lead, reassure and motivate their younger compatriots, setting the example for this next generation. Rohr has already looked beyond this World Cup to the next one. Moses is part of that planning and preparation, and will be the leader after Mikel retires.

The Nigerian and his teammates are off to a rough start, losing 2-0 to Croatia. Moses did his best to spur the Super Eagles into some kind of threat, but he was all alone in doing so. This ultimately blunted his efforts. Unlike Eden Hazard or some of his Chelsea teammates at the World Cup, Moses cannot turn to anyone else on the pitch. Hazard has Kevin de Bruyne, Dries Mertens and Romelu Lukaku to support his efforts. Moses has himself.

With Argentina and Iceland waiting for them, Nigeria needs the Chelsea wing-back to step up. It’s a tough task to accomplish, but if they manage to get out of the group, they will be a difficult Round of 16 opponent.

 

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