It was claimed that both stars are no longer on talking terms due to a fight for leadership and it’s distracting other players in camp.
A source in the camp says the friction is largely due to Onazi’s refusal to take orders from Mikel.
”If we must do well in Russia, the NFF must ensure they resolve the wrangling between Mikel and Onazi. Both players I can confirm are not in talking terms and this could cost the team at the World Cup. As we speak, the tussle is a big distraction for the team. Some players have also pitched their tents with either Mikel or Onazi in the struggle. Though, the reason for tussle is not known yet but some people felt it was due Onazi’s insistence on not taking orders from Mikel,” the source said
The source who is also a footballer added that Ahmed Musa has joined Ogenyi Onazi in his fight with Mikel.
Speaking with Complete Sports Nigeria in a chat, Onazi denied having any rift with Mikel.
“It’s ridiculous to read that I don’t take orders from him (Mikel),” Onazi told CSN. “He’s an outstanding individual and it hurts that this could be out there without verification.
“I relate well with Mikel, he is our captain and our leader. Thank you for trying to balance your reports.
“We all grew up together in Jos and he’s someone I have looked up to since I started my career. I get along with him and he has been helpful encouraging me after the criticism I received after the England game.”