Gernot Rohr will hand Leicester City forward Kelechi Iheanacho the No.10 role, usually played by Mikel Obi, in the Super Eagles starting line-up when they face Poland in an international friendly on Friday.
Mikel will miss the encounter billed for the Municipal Stadium in Wroclaw as he is battling to renew his work permit in China, where he features for Tianjin Teda, but he is expected to join up with the squad in London for the game against Serbia on Tuesday.
According to a camp source, Iheanacho has been playing off centre forward Odion Ighalo in a 4-2-3-1 formation in training and he the Leicester star is expected to keep his place for the World Cup friendly.
“Iheanacho will play Mikel’s position against Poland barring any last minute tactical switch,” the source, a member of the squad, told CSN.
“That’s his preferred role and I think he will do well there. He is solid and quick in his decision making.”
The 21-year-old Iheanacho is expected the most advanced midfield ahead of the deeper central midfielders Wilfred Ndidi and Ogenyi Onazi for the game.
In the Super Eagles last game against Argentina, Iheanacho and Alex Iwobi were paired in attack as Gernot Rohr deployed a 3-5-2 formation.
The former Manchester City forward curled in a brilliant free-kick as Nigeria came from a goal down to beat Argentina 4-2 at the Krasnodar Stadium in Russia last November.