Duo in Nigeria battle
By Peter ORourke
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Nigeria want the duo to join up with the squad for a four-week training camp ahead of next month's African Cup of Nations.
The Super Eagles are keen for all their players to meet up on December 19 which would mean Yobo and Okocha missing their clubs' hectic Christmas schedules.
Bolton boss Sam Allardyce is keen to keep Okocha and has instructed club officials to check on the rules to see when they are obliged to release the player.
Allardyce said: "I have asked our club secretary to look into the situation and see what the rules are because otherwise we will be without him for a four-week warm-up period, plus the tournament itself, and there is always the chance that he could return carrying an injury as well.
"I'm hoping that what they have asked for is beyond the regulations governing when he should be released by us.
"We are not the only club in this predicament - it will affect the likes of Arsenal who have African players too. It is extremely disappointing for us.
"It could be costly. It could even be devastating."
Everton chief executive Michael Dunford echoed Allardyce's comments and revealed Everton had refused to release Yobo.
"He's a valuable member of the team and we don't want to lose him for any longer than is necessary," said Dunford.