Nwakali: ‘Derek McInnes told me what type of player he wants and I am ready’

Chidi Nwakali made his first start for Aberdeen.

Aberdeen’s new loan signing Chidi Nwakali hopes to line up against one of his current Dons team-mates, Kari Arnason, in this summer’s World Cup finals in Russia.

The 21-year-old midfielder, who is waiting for a work permit to be granted before he can complete his move to the Dons from Manchester City, is aiming to use the loan spell at Pittodrie to earn a place in Nigeria’s squad.

The Super Eagles have been drawn in Group D alongside Argentina, Croatia and Arnason’s Iceland, who are competing in a World Cup for the first time.

Nwakali said: “One of the most important things from the coach of the national team is he wants players who are really playing every game and he wants players in higher leagues. I’m in one of the leagues so I am looking forward to the call-up for the national team and serve Nigeria with my heart.

“Kari is now my new team-mate and at the World Cup it’s going to be a very difficult one for us, but I think the best team will take control. The dream of any player is to play in the World Cup and at the age of 21 it’s going to be great for me and I’m working really hard to achieve that.”

The Nigerian, who was most recently on loan at Norwegian side Sogndal, is enjoying getting to know his new team-mates at their Dubai training camp.

He added: “It’s good to join a new team, provided my work permit is granted. I felt happy that they welcomed me and they took to me like a brother the very first time I trained with them.

“It’s nice to play with such players. It has been a pleasure for me.

“Aberdeen is a very good move for me and is a very nice place for me to develop as a young player. I played in Norway and the season ended in November but I’ve been training with Manchester City. I got some days off, came back to training and I’m ready.

“Derek McInnes told me what type of player he wants and I am ready.”