Unlike recent weeks were many of our players suffered misfortune at their respective clubs abroad, there were goals aplenty at the weekend from Nigerian players.
Leading the players to have found the back of the net is Super Eagles skipper, John Obi Mikel who restored parity for his Chinese club. Similarly, Ahmed Musa seemed to have rediscovered his goal-scoring prowess on his return to CSKA Moscow as he was on song with 12 minutes left to play to earn his club a share of the spoils.
Also on target are Sturm Graz’s Emeka Eze, Cyriel Dessers of FC Utrecht, Belgium-based Abduljeleel Ajagun and China-based Dominic Uzoukwu who scored twice for Beijing BG in a famous win:
In yet another comprehensive report, the News Editor, ADEBAYO OLODAN captures the performances of Super Eagles players and hopefuls abroad.
Alex Iwobi (Arsenal): He was substituted in the 86th minute of his team’s 1-2 loss at Newcastle United.
Victor Moses (Chelsea): He was introduced in the 85th minute as the Blues came back from two goals down to win 3-2 away at Southampton.
Kelechi Iheanacho and Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City): Iheanacho was introduced in the 46th minute and got an assist as Leicester City lost 2-1 to Burnley. His teammate, Ndidi was not listed as he is serving out his suspension.
Philip Billing (Huddersfield): The midfielder played the last 13 minutes of his team’s 1-0 win over
Tammy Abraham (Swansea): The leggy forward was introduced in the 65th minute of his team’s 1-1 draw with Everton.
Tosin Adarabioyo and Lukas Nmecha (Manchester City): The youngsters were not part of the match day squad when their club secured a 3-1 win at the Wembley Stadium against Tottenham Hotspur. With the win and following Manchester United’s 0-1 loss to West Brom, Man City were crowned the Premier League Champions.
Koiki extends Burnley stay
English Premier League (EPL) side, Burnley has confirmed that left-back Ali Koiki has signed his first professional contract.
The 18-year-old defender has signed a one-year contract extension with the club with a 12-month option inserted into the deal.
“I’m very happy. It’s a big thing, coming where I’ve come from. It’s another step and I just want to continue to improve,” he said to the club’s official website.
Koiki will be hoping to make his professional debut for Sean Dyche’s side before the current season comes to an end.
“Playing so regularly this season has been a good thing and hopefully next year I can progress and improve myself further,” he added.
“To come into a new training ground every day, where everything is modern, is fantastic and this is a really good place to be.”
Koiki, who is a former Crystal Palace academy player, joined Burnley in 2016.
Watford releases 17-yr-old Adedeji
Premier League side, Watford has confirmed that promising striker, Jubril Adedeji will depart the Hornets at the end of the 2017-2018 season.
Born May 25, 2000, Adedeji is currently a second-year scholar at Watford and was earlier tipped to pen a professional contract with the club after starring for the U18 team in the Professional Development League 2.
The 17-year-old was released along with Jesus Cruz Cabrera, Bradley Empson, Ben Jones and Jamie Lacy.
At the end of last season, the Vicarage Stadium outfit made another strange decision when they parted company with one of their most talented teenagers Ogo Obi, who completed a move to Cardiff City in the January transfer window.
The future of first-team players Isaac Success and Stefano Okaka remains covered in mist, with the Nigeria international loaned out to Malaga in January and the Italian-born striker finding game time hard to come by.
Midfielder Emmanuel Adebiyi will enter the second year of his scholarship with Watford in July.
Ola Aina (Hull City): Aina lasted the duration of his team’s 0-1 lost at home to Sheffield Wednesday.
Enobakhare secures promotion with Ikeme’s Wolves
Benin City-born striker, Bright Enobakhare is poised to make his debut in the English Premier League next season after Wolverhampton Wanderers secured promotion to the topflight.
With Fulham failing to beat Brentford at Craven Cottage on Saturday evening, it means Wolves are guaranteed to finish at least second in the Championship with four games to spare.
To date, Enobakhare has made 19 appearances for Wolves in the Championship this season but has been missing from their match day squad in the last 12 matches due to a quad injury.
The attacker has played nonstop at the Molineux Stadium outfit for five years, having joined the club at the age of fifteen.
The pacy 20-year-old has scored once this season in the division, against Barnsley in September, and provided an assist in a 3-2 win at Hull City.
Super Eagles goalkeeper, Carl Ikeme has played no part in Wolves’ promotion to the Premier League as he is battling Leukemia.
Wolves, who have accumulated 92 points, will host Birmingham City on Sunday afternoon.
Brown Ideye (Malaga): He lasted 77 minutes when his club lost 1– 2 at-home to Real Madrid.
Oghenekaro Etebo and Imoh Ezekiel (Las Palmas): Etebo lasted 90 minutes while Ezekiel was substituted in the 71st minute of their club’s 0-1 defeat against Real Sociedad.
Victor Osimhen (Wolfsburg): The former schoolboy international played the last 10minutes of the goalless draw at home to Augsburg.
Noah-Joel Sarenren-Bazee (Hannover 96): He watched the duration of his team’s 1-1 draw with VfB Stuttgart from the substitutes’ bench.
German Bungesliga side Schalke 04 are leading the race to sign Super Eagles World Cup bound defender Leon Balogun for free during the coming summer transfer window from Mainz05.
Schalke 04 favourite to sign Balogun for free
Mainz 05 and Super Eagles defender, Leon Balogun is closing in on a summer move as his contract is set to expire in the coming days and no talks about an extension.
Balogun is in the final year of his three years deal with Mainz 05 and his form especially for the national team of Nigeria has provoked interest in his services from some clubs in Europe.
However Schalke 04 are the favourite to clinch his signature on a free transfer after a failed move to sign him last season.
Schalke 04 is presently pushing for a spot in next season’s UEFA Champions League and they view the 29-year-old Balogun, who will represent Nigeria at the World Cup in June as a bargain signing for free.
Talks will reportedly get underway after the end of the current Bundesliga season where Balogun has played just 13 games, with many suggesting his contractual situation led to the decision to play him less.
Joel Obi (Torino): The midfielder was an unused substitute when his team drew 0-0 with Chievo.
Chigozie Awaziem (Nantes): He was introduced in the 36th minute of his club’s 1-1 draw with Dijon.
Tyronne Ebuehi (ADO Den Haag): He was substituted in the 71st minute of his team’s 2-1 win over FC Twente.
Ryan Sanusi (Sparta Rotterdam): The forward lasted the duration of his team’s 7-0 thumping away at Vitesse.
Kingsley Ehizibue (PEC Zwolle): He was cautioned in the 55th minute but lasted 90 minutes as his team was held to a 1-1 draw by Excelsior.
Umar Sadiq (NAC Breda) & Bartholomew Ogbeche (Willem II): The former U-23 striker lasted the entirety of his team’s 1-2 loss at home to Willem II for whom Ogbeche was an unused substitute.
Fegor Ogude, Brian Idowu and Aaron Samuel Olanare (Amkar Perm): The trio lasted the entirety of their club’s 0-3 loss at Rubin Kazan. Ogude was issued a yellow card in the 24th minute.
Ahmed Musa (CSKA) & Kehinde Fatai and Sylvester Igboun (FC Ufa): Musa scored in the 78th minute to earn his team a 1-1 draw against FC Ufa with Igboun putting up a 90 minutes performance while Fatai was an unused substitute for the opposing team.
Kenneth Omeruo and Samuel Emem Eduok (Kasimpasa): Omeruo lasted 90 minutes while Eduok was an unused substitute when their club secured a 2-0 win over Karabukspor.
Okechukwu Godson Azubuike (Yeni Malatyaspor): He lasted the distance and was cautioned in the 35th minute of his team’s 1-1 draw at home to Alanyaspor.
Elvis Manu (Genclerbirligi): He logged 90 minutes when his team lost 2-3 away at Kayserispor.
Samuel Kalu, Moses Simon and Anderson Esiti (Gent) & Uche Agbo (Standard Liege): Esiti and Kalu were substituted in the 46th and 80th minute while Simon lasted the duration of their club’s 0-1 loss at Standard Liege. Agbo was introduced in the 57th minute of the match.
Cyriel Dessers (FC Utrecht): He scored the consolation goal for his team in their 1-3 defeat against Feyenoord at the Kluip Stadium, yesterday. The 23-year-old who has committed his international future to Nigeria drew his team level with a sizzling left-footed shot from close range in the 31st minute after picking a pass from teammate, Zakaria Labyad.
Abduljeleel Ajagun (Korijik): The former U-20 skipper was on the score sheet in the 58th minute as his club team won 2-0 away at Lierse. Ajagun scored the second goal of the match when he capitalised on a loose ball after a shot was blocked by goalkeeper Rakovsky.
The midfielder has been directly involved in 13 goals (8 goals, 5 assists) from 34 appearances in all competitions this season.
As a result of the win, Kortrijk are second in Group A of the UEFA Europa League playoffs with six points, one less than Peter Olayinka’s Zulte-Waregem, and their Nigerian star is the club’s joint-leading scorer in the playoffs.
Stephen Odey (FC Zurich): The former MFM forward was introduced in the 80th minute of his club’s 0-1 loss at Young Boys.
Noah Okafor (Basel): The youngster was benched throughout his team’s 2-1 defeat of Lausanne.
Emeka Eze and Bright Edomwonyi (Sturm Graz): Eze scored in the 57th minute and was substituted in the 72nd minute while Edomwonyi was introduced in the 61st minute of their club’s 3-0 defeat of Mattersburg.
Yusuf Otubanjo (Altach): The former U-20 forward drew his team level in the 33rd minute of their 2-1 win over Wolfsberger AC.
Faith Friday Obilor (HJK): He lasted the duration of his club’s 1-0 away win at IFK Mariehamn.
Taye Taiwo and Ojaniemi Ojaniemi (RoPS): Super Eagles outcast, Taiwo was in action for 90 minutes while Ojaniemi was an unused substitute when their club secured a 1-0 win at VPS.
Gomo Onduku and Matias Ojala (Ilves): Onduku came off the substitutes’ bench in the 59th minute while Ojala was an unused substitute when their team defeated KuPS 2-1.
Chidera Ejuke and Sam Adekugbe & Aremu Afeez (Start): The duo of Adekugbe and Ejuke lasted 90 minutes while the former was cautioned in the 77th min of their team’s 6-1 spanking of Start for whom Aremu also put in a 90 minutes shift.
Bruno Ibeh (MS Ashdod): The midfielder lasted the duration of his team’s 1-1 draw at Hapoel Acre.
Dele Aiyenugba (Hapoel Ashkelon): The former Super Eagles net-minder was in goal when his team suffered a 1-2 loss in the relegation play-off.
Ayo Simon Okosun (AC Horsens): He put in a 90 minutes shift when his team lost 0-2 at AaB.
Kennedy Igboananike, Michael Omoh and Isaac Edegware (Oerebro): Igboananike was substituted in the 80th minute while the duo of Omoh and Edegware were unused substitute when their club defeated Trelleborgs FF 2-1 away from home.
Sirius Moses Ogbu (IFK Norrkoeping): He put up a 90 minutes display when his team secured a 1-0 win at Elfsborg.
Chima Akas and Gbenga Arokoyo (Kalmar FF): Former Enyimba defender, Akas lasted 90 minutes while former Kwara Football Academy defender, Arokoyo was an unused substitute when their club suffered a 3-1 loss at IFK Norrkoeping.
Egbuchulam states mission at Swedisch 2nd division side
Chisom Egbuchulam has said he joined Swedish side Falkenbergs FF to help them make history this season.
The 26-year-old who played the 2017 season at BK Häcken on loan from Rangers International spoke to the club’s official website after penning a one-year contract with them last week.
He said: “I am very pleased and pleased to be a part of FFF. I’m here to help the team reach all Swedish.
“I had other alternatives in Sweden and abroad, but I chose FFF because I want to help the team to create history during the season by returning to the High Court. Hopefully we win the series.
“The team ended fourth last year and I think we can do it better this year and finish one or two.
“I’m a strong player. I also have good speed and good technique. I’m good at making goals. But I always want to develop myself in the way the team plays and how the coach wants to use me, he said.
”BK Häcken was a good experience for me and helped me to understand how Swedish football works.
“My goal is to win things and I think I can do it with FFF,” said the stranger, who became Nigerian champion with the Enugu Rangers 2016.
“First, God comes and then my family comes.”
Chisom looks forward to learning more about the club from his countryman Dominic Chatto.
“Knowing Chatto will help me to correct the team in a good way. He has told me good things about the club, “said the 26-year-old.
The striker played 10 matches and rendered two for BK Häcken last season, netting a hat trick against Kvibille in the Swedish Cup.
“Chisom is a fast-paced forward that we hope can complement the other forwards in a good way. We have obtained work permits and game clearance from the Swedish Football Association and what we are waiting for is a screening summary that will allow us to get him as soon as possible, says sports director Håkan Nilsson.
Nosa Igiebor (Anorthosis): The former Real Betis midfielder was an unused substitute as his team drew 1-1 at home to AEK Larnaca.
John Obi Mikel (Tianjin Teda): The Super Eagles skipper opened his goals account by leading his team to a 2-1 home win against Guangzhou R & F. He drew his team level in the 27th minute after the visitors had shot into the lead. The goal was his first in six matches this season. Last term, he netted a goal in 13 appearances for the club.
Dominic Uzoukwu (Beijing BG): The Brazillian-born Nigerian striker scored a brace in the Chinese League One as his team defeated Shenzen 2-1 in the fourth round of matches. The 23-year-old Sao Paulo native opened his goal scoring account in his team’s 3-0 rout of ZJ Yiteng.
Daniel Akpeyi and James Okwuosa (Chippa Utd): Akpeyi was in goal while Okwuosa played in the heart of defence as their club drew 1-1 with Ajax Cape Town.