Following his participation in the 2016 Rio Olympics representing his nation, reports indicate that Nigerian midfielder John Obi is being punished by Chelsea.
According to coach Gernot Rohr, he says the English Premier League side is punishing the Super Eagles anchorman for his patriotic move to represent his country.
Mikel, who captained Nigeria to an Olympic bronze medal in Rio, has not featured for Antonio Conte's side this season.
“We spoke about Mikel when I was at Chelsea last month,” Rohr told KweséSports.
“He trains very well with the team but he is being punished for deciding to go to the Olympic Games for Nigeria.
“I will play him here because he is training well and doing very well for us. I cannot punish him for deciding to make a sacrifice for Nigeria.
“But we speak and I listen to him. If he says he is tired and wants to go out, I will take him out, if he says he wants to continue, he will continue, but I listen to him and he listens to me.”
However, Mikel will now skipper the Super Eagles on Saturday, 12 November when they face Algeria during their 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier in Uyo.