Former Flying Eagles star Taiwo Awoniyi joined Liverpool in 2015 following his breath-taking displays during the FIFA U17 World Cup in 2013.
Four years after his much celebrated move to the Anfield Stadium, the 21-year-old is yet to feature for Jurgen Klopp’s side, no thanks to work permit issues and Nigeria national team head coach Gernot Rohr.
How does this concern the Super Eagles head coach?
Work permit is a document/license issued by the British embassy to foreign players who want to ply their trade in the United Kingdom.
Players are expected to produce important credentials to the country’s football FA so as to complete the process.
For players to get their work permit documents sorted out as soon as possible, they must feature for their country’s senior national team in major tournaments and competitive matches. Now you see where Gernot Rohr comes in.
Awoniyi was doing great with Belgian side Royal Excel Mouscron last season but the Franco-German tactician didn’t extend an invitation to him.
At that time, Super Eagles were involved in a dead rubber game against Algeria which Rohr should have used to test the youngster’s quality, instead, the former Bordeaux manager kept faith with the usual players.
The same scenario was witnessed yet again as the manager overlooked the in-form star in his recent squad to face Seychelles in another dead rubber game.
The more Rohr continues to ignore Awoniyi in his team selection, the longer the player completes his work permit process, which indirectly affects Awoniyi’s chance of making his debut appearance for the Reds.
Nonetheless, Awoniyi could be part of Liverpool’s pre-season tour in the summer but he’s ineligible to feature in competitive games until he is legally permitted by the English FA.