… Sadiq faces sack as Gerrard hits at ex-U-23 star
Alex Iwobi and Isaac Success both impressed for Arsenal and Watford as second half substitutes. However, it was the 22-year-old Iwobi who inspired his team to a 2-0 win and was involved in the two goals.
On the goal scoring sheets this weekend across various leagues are; Jude Ighalo, Emem Eduok, Paul Onuachu, Moses Ogbu and Friday Obilor among others.
Elsewhere, former U-23 forward, Sadiq Umar has found playing time limited under Liverpool legend, Steven Gerrard and may be released by Rangers in January. The former England midfielder has consistently warned the Roma-loanee to improve all aspects of his game if he is to make his match day squad.
ADEBAYO OLODAN takes you through the performances of Nigerian players abroad as the all-important African Nations Cup qualifier against Libya beckons.
Victor Moses (Chelsea): He was brought on in the 73rd min of Chelsea’s 1-1 draw with his former club, Liverpool at Stamford Bridge.
Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City): Ndidi bossed the midfield as the enforcer more than he won tackles on the day but still left a huge impression as he clocked in another 90 minutes when his team secured a 2-0 win over Newcastle Utd. His national teammate, Iheanacho got only his second 90 mins this season in the league.
Alex Iwobi (Arsenal) & Isaac Success (Watford): Iwobi rose from the substitutes’ bench and had an assist as his team secured a 2-0 win over Watford. Like Iwobi, Success was also introduced in the 72nd min but he ended up on the losing side.
Success was presented the chance to break the deadlock as he ran through on goal and perfectly chipped the ball over Bernd Leno, but it sailed just narrowly off the mark.
Leon Balogun (Brighton): He was an unused substitute when his club suffered a 0-2 loss to Manchester City at the Etihad.
Ademola Lookman (Everton): He watched proceedings from the substitutes’ bench as his team secured a 3-0 win over Fulham.
Philip Billing (Huddersfield Town): The former Denmark U-21 international made his seventh consecutive start of the season when his club was beaten 2-0 by Tottenham Hotspur. He was cautioned in the 86th min of the match.
Oghenekaro Etebo (Stoke City) & Semi Ajayi (Rotherham Utd): He played for 66 mins as his club came from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 at Rotherham Utd who paraded Ajayi for the entire duration of the encounter. It was the ninth game in the English Championship for Ajayi this season.
Ovie Ejaria and Sadiq Umar (Rangers): Ejaria lasted the duration of his team’s 0-1 loss to Livingston while Umar was not listed.
Efe Ambrose (Hibernian): The Super Eagles outcast out in another 90 mins performance as his team defeated St. Mirren 1-0 away from home. It was his seventh start of the season.
Sadiq faces sack as Gerrard hits at ex-U-23 star
Steven Gerrard has laid into Umar Sadiq again, warning him he needs to improve every part of his game if he is to get a chance at Rangers.
The striker joined on loan from Roma in the summer but has played just 27 minutes of football, and Gerrard hasn’t been impressed.
He admitted Sadiq is highly unlikely to play in the Betfred Cup semi-final against Aberdeen, despite Alfredo Morelos being suspended and Kyle Lafferty cup-tied.
It means the Rangers manager is likely to line up with either Glenn Middleton or Ryan Kent in the middle of a front three and now he’s issued a further warning to Sadiq.
Gerrard warned the Nigerian he has to “come to the party” when he was quizzed about the striker.
Now he has fired another warning. When asked about what Sadiq must improve to earn a place in the team, Gerrard said: “Everything.”
Ola Aina & Joel Obi (Torino): Chelsea loanee, Aina put in a 90 minutes shift when his club secured a 1-0 win over Chievo for whom Obi was not listed. The match was Aina’s fifth start in six games for Torino.
Orji Okwonkwo (Bologna) & William Troost-Ekong (Udinese): Okwonkwo came on in the 75th min while Troost-Ekong lasted the duration of Bologna’s 2-1 defeat of Udinese. The 25 year old Ekong has made six Serie A appearances for his club so far.
Simy Nwankwo (Crotone): He was introduced in the 77th min as his team drew 2-2 with Brescia.
Moses Simeon (Levante): He played a cameo role following his introduction in the 88th min of his club’s 1-2 loss to Real Vallidolid.
Anthony Ujah (Mainz 05): He came on in the 61st min of his club’s1-0 loss to Schalke 04. The game was Ujah’s fourth substitute appearance this season for Mainz. He has scored twice so far this term.
Jamilu Collins (Paderborn): He made his ninth league appearance and went the distance as his team defeated Erzgebirge Aue 1-0.
Sheyi Ojo (Reims) & Samuel Kalu (Bordeaux): Ojo played the last 21mins while new Super Eagles sensation, Kalu was not considered when their teams battled to a goalless draw at Reims.
Sylvester Igboun (FC Ufa): The Super Eagles fringe forward was on target as his team came from a goal down to defeat FK Yenisey Krasnoyarsk 2-1. Igboun has played seven games for the club that currently occupies 13th position in the league.
Bryan Idowu (Lokomotiv Moscow): The left-back made his second league start as his team defeated Republican FC Akhmat Grozny 2-0.
Emem Eduok (Kasimpasa) & Ogenyi Onazi and Anthony Nwakaeme (Trabzonspor): Eduok bagged his second league goal of the season when his team lost 2-4 at Trabzonspor for whom Super Eagles vice captain, Onazi lasted the duration of the encounter.
Eduok shot Kasimpasa into the lead in the 30th min while Nwakaeme was an unused substitute for Trabzonspor.
Henry Onyekuru (Galatasaray): The Super Eagles forward was introduced in the 65th min when his team secured a 1-0 win against Eruzrum.
Abdul Ajagun (KV Korijik): The former schoolboy skipper lasted 90 mins as his club lost 1-3 at home to Eupen.
Victor Osimhen (Charleroi): He played all 90 mins as his team defeated Lokoren 2-1. The 19-year-old has scored one league goal in four league appearances. The player midweek scored midweek when his team defeated lower league side, Eendracht Aalst 2-1 in the Belgium Cup.
Awoniyi ends goal drought with brace in Cup win
On loan Liverpool forward, Taiwo Awoniyi ended a six game barren run in front of goal for Gent with a brace in their 4-2 cup win over Excelsior Virton.
Awoniyi wasted no time in giving his team an early lead but Virton went into the break level at 1-1, a lead which Gent regained three minutes after the half hour mark but soon lost it again in the 78th minute.
Six minutes before the end of the game, Awoniyi whose last goal for the club came on the 16th of August against Polish side Jagiellonia Bialystok in the qualifiers of the Europa League struck again to restore his team lead.
The game was finally put to bed when Gent scored their 4th goal of the encounter to seal a 4-2 win with Awoniyi showing the signs he displayed last season for Mouscron in same Belgium where he scored ten goals in the league in his one year loan with the club.
Stephen Odey (FC Zuerich): The former MFM striker was substituted in the 75th min as his club 2-1 against FC Sion.
Eleke’s Best Goal Award excites Makinwa
Former Super Eagles striker, Stephen Ayodele Makinwa has expressed his delight with the best goal of the month award won by one of his players, Blessing Eleke.
Makinwa said it was very encouraging to see Eleke making giant strides so soon in his days at FC Luzern of Switzerland, where he believes the attacker can still make a bigger impression.
The 22-year-old attacker’s solo goal in Luzern’s 4-2 win over Lugano on August 4 was picked as the most eye-catching goal in the Swiss topflight last month.
Eleke, who netted his maiden Super League goal for Luzern few days after completing a move from SC Ashdod of Israel, won the award ahead of FC Sion’s Pajtim Kasami and Stjepan Kukuruzovic of Lausanne-Sport.
Eleke started well, with a haul of six goals in his first nine appearances in all competitions for FC Luzern this season, such that Makinwa feels taking the lad to Switzerland was a deal worth all the sweat.
While celebrating Eleke’s emergence with the award for the month of August in the Swiss Super League, Makinwa expressed confidence in the player’s ability to maintain good work with his club.
Ifeanyi Mathew (Lillestroem): He lasted all 90mins as his team earned a 2-0 win against Bryn.
Afeez Aremu (Start): He was on for the entirety of his team’s 2-1 win over Bolde.
Paul Onuachu (FC Midtylland): He scored his third league goal of the season as his team secured a 5-2 home win over Hobro kn.
The 24-year-old was substituted after 75 mins in his ninth league appearance this season.
The leggy forward came off the substitutes’ bench and scored the winning goal in the 46th minute as his team won 2-1 against Dalum in the Dannish Cup midweek.
George Akpabio (Bnei Sakhnin): The former South Africa-based forward was an unused substitute when his team drew 1-1 with Hapoel Hadera.
Agada pleased with personal form
Hapoel Katamon Jerusalem forward William Agada is pleased with his current form in the 2018/19 season.
The 19-year-old struck once in Katamon’s Israeli Liga Leumit 3-1 win over Sektzia Nes Tziona on Friday.
“I have more confidence to do the rabona with my right.
“We have to keep going like that, all matches are hard but we can make it easier by doing things well.
“I’m still working the same and trying to score more goals this season. I’m paid to score goals.
“On a personal level, am pleased with four goals so far for Hapoel Katamon Jerusalem in the league. There’s need to work harder and hit double figures.”
Moses Ogbu (IK Sirius): He grabbed the equaliser for his team in the 49th min of their 1-1 draw at home to IFK Norrkoping. Sirius is now 13 on the table with 20 points from 24 matches.
Ezekiel Henty (NK Osijek): He played all 90 mins for his team as they trounced Inter Zapresic 3-0. Henty who has scored three goals in nine games has failed to score in his last six games.
Ubong Ekpai (Vitoria Plizen): The former Akwa Utd star was an unused substitute when his club won 1-0 against AC Sparta Prague.
Michael Olaha (Sông Lam Ngh An): He lasted for 90 mins of his club’s 0-1 loss at home to Thanh Hoa.
Marvin Ogunjimi (Sài Gòn): The former Belgium-based forward was an unused substitute when his team secured a 1-0 win over SHB-Ðà Nong.
Ganiyu Oseni (Hà Noi) & Chinedu Udoka (Becamex Binh Duong): Former schoolboy international, Oseni lasted the duration of his team’s 2-0 win over Duong for whom played as a late substitute.
Friday Obilor and Christantus Macauley (HJK Helsinki): Obilor scored the winning goal in the 82nd min while Macauley was introduced in the 85th min of their club’s 2-1 win against Ilves
Benjamin Tiedi (FK Liepaja): He impressed in the last 20 mins after coming on during his club’s 3-0 win against Valmiera.
Maduka Christopher Udeh (Moravce): He was an unused substitute when his team suffered a 1-2 loss at home to Zilina.
Abdullahi Zubairu (Trencin): He was in action when his team lost 0-2 at Podbrezova.
Odion Ighalo (Changchun Yatai): He scored his 18th goal in the League, but his Changchun Yatai slide to 8th spot in the table after back-to-back defeats with the last one against SIPG.