Chelsea’s Nigerian midfielder Victor Moses, at the age of 27, has decided to retire from international football, citing the need to focus on his young family and club career as the real reasons behind his shock decision.
In a lengthy Facebook post, Moses broke the news to his fans over why he wouldn’t be adding to his 37 caps and 12 goals for the Super Eagles anymore:
Having made his debut for the national side in 2012, Moses lifted the Africa Cup of Nations with the Super Eagles in 2013 and was an important part of the team that played at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
Nigeria’s loss, however, stands to be Chelsea’s gain as the energetic wide player is just entering his prime as a footballer.
At Stamford Bridge since 2012, Moses hasn’t had the most straightforward career path as a Chelsea player.
Initially loaned out to a number of clubs like Liverpool, Stoke City and West Ham United, Moses eventually made his breakthrough into the Blues first-team in the 2016-17 season and he’s been a regular ever since.
Antonio Conte’s 3-4-3 system suited Moses perfectly as he was utilised as as right wing-back to devastating effect as the Blues won the Premier League title in the Italian’s first season.
The following season wasn’t as successful, with the Blues only managing to lift the FA Cup as they finished a disappointing fifth in the league, but Moses was among the consistent performers for the West Londoners.
Now, with new coach Maurizio Sarri at the helm, Moses might find playing time hard to come by as the Italian prefers a flat 4-3-3, with Cesar Azpilicueta reprising his role as a traditional right-back.
Unless the Spaniard gets injured or his suspended, it’s difficult to see Moses starting games on a regular basis.
Initially he started off as a winger and while in theory he could still play further up on the flank, it’s even less likely that he’ll be able to beat the likes of Wilian, Pedro and Eden Hazard to a starting spot anytime soon.
However, with the Blues participating in the UEFA Europa League this season, the Nigerian may well be utilised heavily in the second-tier European competition.
The Blues next face crosstown rivals Arsenal on Saturday (2200 IST) in the Premier League.