Agesture by the Iceland team in sending best wishes to Nigeria keeper Carl Ikeme, who is being treated for leukaemia, has gone down well with the Super Eagles ahead of their World Cup encounter in Volgograd on Friday.
The 32-year-old Wolverhampton Wanderers keeper was the national team’s first-choice and has been named as an unregistered ’24th member’ of the Nigeria World Cup squad after he was unable to be chosen because of his cancer treatment.
Ahead of the Group D game on Friday, Iceland players sent their best wishes to Ikeme, with Ikeme’s name imprinted on the number 1 jersey of Iceland.
A photo of Iceland’s players was posted on the Instagram account of former Wolves striker Jon Dadi Bodvarsson, who is shown holding up the jersey.
“It’s a nice gesture from them,” said 19-year-old keeper Francis Uzoho, who earned his first cap for the Super Eagles late last year in Ikeme’s absence.
“The gesture comes from the squad and obviously Bodvarsson who used to play with him at Wolverhampton,” Iceland captain Aron Gunnarsson said.
“I’m wishing him all the best from the squad, and it just shows that football is one big family that will stick together.”
Iceland coach Heimir Hallgrimsson agreed: “It is a big family. Even though we are playing against him, of course, this is just much bigger than football. We wish him all the best.”