…Kayode sees red in Ukraine
After returning from international break, Super Eagles players and their compatriots turned in impressive performances for their respective clubs across Europe.
For the first time since the commencement of this campaign, no fewer than three players scored a hat-trick. Interestingly, none of the goal scorers are part of the senior national team set-up at the moment.
In far away India, former Super Eagles forward, Bartholomew Ogbeche scored thrice for his club, same for leggy forward, Paul Onuachu in the Danish Super League and Kehinde Fatai, who also made headlines in Belarus at the weekend.
There was however a not too pleasant news from the Ukraine as Kayode Olanrewaju was issued a red card with 25 mins of the match left to play.
In yet another extensive report, the News Editor, ADEBAYO OLODAN captures the performances of Nigerian players in Europe and Asia.
Victor Moses (Chelsea): He was missing as his team drew 2-2 with Manchester United at Stamford Bridge.
Leon Balogun (Brighton): The centre half was an unused substitute when his club won 1-0 against Newcastle Utd.
Isaac Success (Watford): At the Molineux Stadium, Success was not successful in terms of goals but played his part as Watford claimed a 2-0 win against Wolverhampton Wanderers.
The Nigeria international lasted 75 mins in his first start of the season for the Hornets.
Luke Amos (Tottenham): The injured player was not named in the squad as they secured a 1-0 win over West Ham Utd.
Balogun pushing for recognition after U-18 hat-trick for Arsenal
Young striker, Folarin Balogun has continued to enhance his reputation after scoring a hat-trick as Arsenal U-18s defeated Reading 4-2 Saturday afternoon.
Balogun gave the Gunners the lead in the 24th minute but the Royals were back on level terms courtesy of Michael Olise’s goal three minutes before the end of the half.
But the home team went back in front through Stan Flaherty two minutes after the intermission.
Balogun made it 3-1 on 64 minutes before completing the scoring for Arsenal in the 77th minute.
The 17-year-old played the full game, Ryan Alebiousu entered into the game as a substitute with six minutes left and the third player of Nigerian descent named in Arsenal’s match day squad, goalkeeper Arthur Okonkwo was an unused substitute.
Arsenal provisionally top the table with 21 points from eight matches and travel to Swansea City in their next league game.
Folarin Balogun, who has represented England and United States youth teams, is the leading marksman in the U-18 Premier League South with eight goals from six matches.
Uwakwe opens 2018-19 account for Blues
Promising midfielder, Tariq Uwakwe opened his goal scoring account for the 2018-2019 campaign in Chelsea’s comprehensive 4-1 win over Manchester City in a Premier League 2 fixture.
Uwakwe started on the bench before replacing Daishawn Redan in the 62nd minute and he wasn’t the only player of Nigerian descent on parade as Nathanael Ogbeta and Tom Dele-Bashiru were both in action for City.
Just when it appeared the first half will end scoreless, George McEachran smashed home a half-volley to give Chelsea the lead in the 43rd minute before Charlie Brown fired in from close range to double the lead on 74 minutes.
With12 minutes remaining, it became 3-0 thanks to Uwakwe, who rose highest to head in at the back-post before providing an assist for the fourth goal scored by Familio-Castillo.
Prior to the fixture, Uwakwe last scored for Chelsea youth teams against Birmingham City in the FA Youth Cup in April 2018.
The 18-year-old was a member of the England team that won the 2017 Toulon Tournament by beating Ivory Coast in the final.
Ogenekaro Etebo (Stoke City): He was not listed as his team was defeated 1-0 at home to Birmingham City.
Semi Ajayi (Rotherham Utd): He lasted for 90 mins as his team drew 1-1 with Bolton Wanderers.
Tammy Abraham (Aston Villa): The Chelsea loanee made it four goals in seven matches after netting the winner in his club’s 1-0 win against Swansea City at Villa Park.
The England U-21 striker headed home the winner in the 8th min in Dean Smith’s first game in charge.
Efe Ambrose (Hibernian): The Super Eagles outcast lasted the entirety of his club’s 2-4 loss at Celtic.
Ovie Ejaria and Umar Sadiq (Rangers): While Ejaria played for 90 mins, Sadiq was an unused substitute as their club secured a 3-1 win at Hamilton Academical.
Gerrard ready to hand Sadiq Rangers lifeline
Steven Gerrard is ready to throw Umar Sadiq a Rangers lifeline after revealing the player has finally bucked up his ideas.
The Ibrox boss gave a scathing assessment of the on-loan Roma striker since his summer arrival when he insisted last month the 21-year-old needed to improve ‘everything’.
He told Sadiq he would need to ‘come to the party’ if he wanted to stand a chance of replacing suspended frontman Alfredo Morelos and the Colombian’s cup-tied deputy Kyle Lafferty in next week’s Betfred Cup semi-final showdown with Aberdeen.
The Rangers boss insisted last month that 21-year-old needed to improve ‘everything.’
Kenneth Omeruo (Leganes): The centre back saw action for 70 mins as his club drew 1-1 away to Valencia.
Francis Uzoho (Elche): The Super Eagles goalkeeper finally made his debut for his new club and he bagged the ‘Man of the Match’ award following Elche’s 2-0 defeat of Malaga.
Uzoho appreciates after debut win.
Super Eagles goalkeeper, Francis Uzoho has applauded the fans for their unflinching support in Eleche’s 2-0 defeat of Malaga in the Spanish Segunda division league at the weekend.
Uzoho moved on loan to Elche from fellow Segunda side Deportivo de la Coruna where he made his break last season before being returned to the youth side to make way for more experienced goalkeepers.
According to sofa score statistical rating, Uzoho was given 8.5 per cent rating out of 10, the highest in the game after making a total of five saves and four of them coming from inside the box.
Uzoho appreciated the fans on his official Twitter handle saying. “Great performance yesterday night guys, the fans we felt your support throughout the game.”
Elche’s next fixture will be at home to Real Zaragoza on Sunday October 28 and the Eagles shot stopper will be hoping to make another appearance.
Samuel Kalu (Bordeaux): The Super Eagles winger came on in the 62nd min of his team’s 0-2 loss at Montpellier.
William Troost Ekong (Udinese): He was replaced after 35 mins of his team’s 0-3 loss at home to Napoli.
Simmy Nwankwo (Crotone): He was introduced in the 69th min as his team won 2-1 against Padova
Kelechi Nwakali (FC Porto): The youngster was a non playing substitute when his B side lost 1-2 to Varzim in the lower division.
Adesoye Oyewole (FC Orenburg) & Fegor Ogude (FK Yenisey Krasnoyarsk): The duo lasted 90 mins for their respective club.
Brian Idowu (Lokomotiv Moscow): was an unused sub as his club Locomotive Moscow won 2-1 against Rostov
Sylvester Igboun (FC Ufa): He lasted all 90 mins as his team drew 0-0 with Rubin Kazan.
Stephen Odey (FC Zuerich): He has continued with his rich vein of form lately by scoring in his club’s 3-3 draw with table toppers, Young Boys on Saturday. The former MFM forward scored his sixth goal of the campaign in 11 matches for his club in the 11th min to draw the first blood. Though he lasted 90 mins, Odey was however cautioned in the 47th min of the match.
Kayode sees red in slim Shaktar win
Former Flying Eagles striker, Olarenwaju Kayode had a forgettable weekend as he was shown the red card when his team, Shakhtar Donetsk defeated Desna 1-0.
The former Austria Wien player was issued a red card in the red card of the match but his team managed to hold on to their 1-0 advantage.
The striker who has been making consistent appearance for the Ukrainian champions is expected to miss out of the club’s subsequent match.
Daniel Adejo (Lamia): The former Flying Eagles full back lasted the duration of his team’s 2-1 win at AE Larissa.
Uche Agbo (Standard Liege): The Super Eagles fringe player was yet again an unused substitute when his team played a goalless draw with Royal Excel Mouscron.
Abdul Ajagun (Kortrijk): He was a non- playing substitute when his team secured a 3-1 win over St. Truiden.
Imoh Ezekiel joins injury list
Super Eagles and KV Kortjik winger, Imoh Ezekiel has been ruled out of action for at least two weeks with a muscle strain, footballlive.ng gathered.
The 24-year-old well-travelled former RSC Anderlecht striker returned to Belgium after time at Standard Liege as a free agent after he was released by Las Palmas of Spain.
Kortjik, who also have former Flying Eagles captain Abduljaleel Ajagun on their books, are 11th on the table with 11 points from 10 matches.
However, Ezekiel has yet to score in five league appearances since his delayed arrival at Kortjik due to visa issues.
Samuel Emem Eduok (Kasimpasa): He played for 84 mins and scored his team’s fifth goal as they thrashed Akhisar Mld Spor 5-0 on Saturday. The goal of the former Esperance forward came in the 74th min of the match.
Onyekuru out for 2 weeks
Galatasaray forward, Henry Onyekuru is set to miss the Super Eagles African Nations Cup qualifier against South Africa after the club confirmed that he suffered a hamstring injury while on international duty.
Though the player is expected to be out for two weeks, another account said he may miss out of action for up to six weeks.
It would be recalled that Onyekuru came on as a late substitute last Tuesday when the Super Eagles secured a 3-2 win over Libya in Sfax, Tunisia.
Chico Ofoedu (Maccabi Tel Aviv): He scored in the 7th and 33rd min in his team’s 4-0 rout of Hapoel Hadera.
Yusuf Otubanjo (LASK): He was substituted in the 78th min as his team drew 1-1 with Altach.
Musa Muhammed (HNK Gorica): He put in a 90 mins performance as his team won 1-0 away at Slaven.
Onuachu give new coach dream start with hat-trick
Leggy forward, Paul Onuachu scored a hat-trick to give new FC Midtjylland coach, Kenneth Andersen a perfect start in the club’s 4-1 win at FC Nordsjaelland.
The former U-19 coach took over the leadership of the team following the departure of Jess Thorup to Belgian giants, Ghent.
The 24-year-old (Onuachu) broke the deadlock in the 50th min and added the second in the 77th min before completing his hat-trick in the 81st min.
Godsday Donyoh had earlier leveled the scoreline for Kasper Hjulmand’s men in the 53rd min of the match while Evander sealed the victory with four minutes before regulation time.
Onuachu, who has now scored seven goals so far this season was replaced by Mayron George after his third goal of the match.
With the victory which was their second away win this term, FC Midtjylland now sits atop the log with 12 points from six matches.
The team will welcome Brondby next at the MCH Arena on October 29.
Emmanuel Ogude (Vendsyssel FF): He was substituted in the 87th min of his club’s 0-1 loss to AC Horsens.
Marvin Egho (Randers FC): He was introduced with 7 mins to the end of his team’s 1-1 draw with SonderjyskE.
Daniel Chima (Molde): The Scandinavian leagues veteran was a non-playing substitute when his club played a 2-2 draw with Sarpsborg 08.
James Adeniyi (Gabala SC): He scored a brace in the 17th and 77th min of his club’s 3-1 defeat of PFC Netchi.
Faith Friday Obilor and Macauley Chrisantus (HJK): Obilor was cautioned in the 35th min and lasted 90 mins while Chrisantus was an unused substitute when their club won 1-0 at home to SJK.
Matias Ojala (Ilves): He lasted the duration of his team’s 0-1 loss to FC Lahti.
Taye Taiwo (RoPS): He was on for 90 mins but picked up a yellow card with 9 mins left to play in his club’s 2-1 win at VPS.
Lordson Ichull and Adeniyi Michael Ibiyomi (AC Kajaani): Little-known Ibiyomi scored twice in the 51st and 68th min while his teammate, Ichull was also in action as their club defeated JJK 2-1 away from home.
Fatai scores thrice in 6-goal thriller
In the Minsk derby in Belarus, former FC Ufa striker, Kehinde Fatai scored thrice as his team, FC Minks and Dinamo played out a thrilling 3-3 draw.
The former Flying Eagles star terrorised opposing defenders all day at the Stadion FK Minsk.
Fatai struck in the 5th, 45th and 67th minute, taking his tally to 4 goals in 4 matches for the capital outfit.
Chijoke Udoji (Enosis Paralimni) & Nosa Igiebor (Anorthosis): Udoji found the back of the net in the 19th min and was replaced in the 70th min while Igiebot lasted the duration of their teams’ 1-1 draw.
Odion Ighalo (Changchun Yatai): The Super Eagles forward was not listed as his team drew 1-1 with Beijin Guoan. In 2018, Ighalo has so far scored 26 goals in 35 matches for club and country.
Ogbeche nets hat-trick for Northeast Utd
North East United striker, Bartholomew Ogbeche is in cloud nine, after taking his haul of goals after arriving the club to four from three matches.
The well-traveled former Paris Saint-Germain star roared back into the headlines with a hat-trick under 10 minutes in his club’s Indian Super League 4-3 spanking of Chennaiyin.
The 34-year-old’s goals arrived in the 29th, 37th and 39th minutes respectively in the seven-goal thriller.
“I am happy for the hat-trick. We want to continue like that, we have the ambition to win all the games.
“Our aim was to win the game away from home, the dream was realized in an impressive fashion.
“This hat-trick isn’t about me but the whole team. It was a concerted effort by everyone at Northeast United. We have to continue the same way we are going, I want to win something with my new club,” Ogbeche said.
Leopards’ striker, Orotumal headed out
AFC Leopards mid-season signing Alex Orotumal is on his way out of the club, according to Kahawa Tungu sources.
The 24-year-old striker could complete a move to Ethiopian Premier League giants St. Georges.
Alex was signed by Ingwe’s patron and Nairobi County Senator Johnson Sakaja from Sunrise FC of Rwanda on a two-year-deal.
“The move could be sealed by the end of today (Friday). Leopards have accepted a Ksh1.5 million offer,” one source said.