…as Osimhen, Iwobi suffer defeats
It was a bitter-sweet performances for Nigerian stars in Europe as the 2022/23 season gradually draws to a close. EBENEZER BAJELA and ADEWALE ABIODUN highlight how the players fared for their respective clubs over the weekend
Frank Onyeka (Brentford)
Onyeka was in action on Sunday as Brentford beat West Ham 2-0 at the Gtech Community Stadium.
With the Bees leading by two goals, Thomas Frank introduced the Nigerian in place of Mathias Jensen to help solidify the midfield and Onyeka did exactly just that as Brentford kept a clean sheet and claimed all three points.
The 20 minutes of action was Onyeka’s 18th league appearance this season.
Alex Iwobi (Everton)
Iwobi was in action as Everton suffered a 3-0 defeat to champions Manchester City at the Goodison Park on Sunday.
The midfielder could not replicate the same performance that saw him help the Toffees humiliate Brighton 5-1 last week.
He was in action for 90 minutes but struggled to cope in midfield against the Cityzens, who controlled the game from start to finish. The former Arsenal man did more of defensive duties but was helpless as City found the back of the net on three occasions.
Onuachu, Aribo (Southampton)
South coast side, Southampton, faced a disheartening 2-0 defeat at home against Fulham on Saturday, resulting in their relegation to the Championship after an admirable 11-year stay in the English topflight.
Paul Onuachu made his 11th appearance in the Premier League for the Saints while Joe Aribo observed the match from the bench.
While Aribo has been out of favour, Onuachu is also yet to impress, having failed to replicate his goalscoring form since he arrived from Belgium.
Awoniyi, Dennis (Nottingham Forest)
Taiwo Awoniyi made a significant impact for Nottingham Forest, securing a crucial 2-2 draw against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Saturday. Awoniyi’s back-to-back brace played a vital role in Nottingham Forest’s commendable performance.
The striker gave the Tricky Trees the lead and was also in the right place at the right time to find an equaliser after Raheem Sterling had put the Blues up with a brace as well.
Awoniyi now has eight goals and one assist in 24 Premier League appearances for Forest, despite injuries that have hampered his campaign.
His compatriot, Emmanuel Dennis, was ruled out of the game with a knock.
Chuba Akpom (Boro)
In-form Akpom was in action in the first leg of the Championship semi-final between Coventry and Middlesbrough as the two sides played out a cagey 0-0 draw at the CBS Arena.
Despite being on the field for the entire duration of the game, the Nigerian could not add to his 28 goals tally.
He was shown a yellow card in the 79th minute.
Victor Osimhen (Napoli)
Still in their title celebration mood, Osimhen was powerless as Napoli suffered a 2-0 defeat to Monza at the U-Power Stadium on Sunday.
The striker played the entire 90 minutes but could not add to his 23 goals tally.
He will, however, hope to find his scoring boots when the champions host in-form Inter Milan in their next league game.
Ola Aina (Torino)
Aina watched from the bench as Torino claimed all three points away from home after beating Verona 1-0 at the Stadio M. A. Bentegodi in the Serie A on Sunday.
The right-back missed Torino’s last seven matches due to a muscle injury but returned to the bench on Sunday.
He was, however, not called into action and was unable to add to his 16 league appearances this season.
Moses Simon (Nantes)
Simon made his 29th league appearance of the season in Nantes’ 0-0 draw against Toulouse at the Stadium Municipal on Sunday.
The winger was in action for 74 minutes before being substituted for Moussa Sissoko.
The Nigerian continues to struggle for form as he has only registered two assists in his last 12 games.
Bonke Innocent (Lorient)
Bonke helped Lorient claim a point against Montpellier at Stade de la Mosson on Sunday.
The midfielder was handed a starting role by manager Regis Le Bris and was in action for 59 minutes before coming off for Ayman Kari.
It was the 23-year-old’s 23rd appearance of the season.
Bobby Adekanye (Go Ahead Eagles)
It was an evening to endure for Adeyanye as the winger and his side suffered a 3-0 defeat to Feyenoord at de Kuip on Sunday.
The loss handed the hosts the league title in front of their supporters at home.
The Ibadan-born winger was in action for 74 minutes before coming off for Rashaan Fernandes.
He has six goals and four assists this season.
Victor Boniface (Union St.Gilloise)
It was another decent performance for Boniface as he help Union claim a 3-0 win over Genk at the Stade Joseph Marien on Sunday.
The forward was in action for 90 minutes and was shown a yellow card before he was substituted in additional time, with Cameron Puertas Castro coming on as his replacement.
Gift Orban (Gent)
Gent showcased a dominant performance in the First Division A, scoring his third hat-trick for Gent in their resounding 4-0 away victory against Cercle Brugge. Orban’s remarkable performance has firmly placed Gent as the favourites to secure a UEFA Conference League play-off ticket. He has nine goals in 10 league appearances.
Samuel Chukwueze (Villarreal)
Chukwueze displayed exceptional skills for Villarreal as they dominated Athletic Bilbao with a resounding 5-1 victory at the Estadio de la Ceramica. Although Chukwueze didn’t find the back of the net, his contributions to Villarreal’s attacking play were evident throughout the match.
Chukwueze has six goals and five assists already in La Liga plus numerous goals contributions across other competitions this season.
Assist Oshoala (Barcelona Feminine)
Oshoala played a crucial role for Barcelona in their 3-0 victory over Athletic Club.
Oshoala’s presence on the field for the entire duration of the match added depth and quality to Barcelona’s attacking play. Her performance contributed significantly to the team’s win. The striker is currently third in the Spanish Ladies Premier League Golden Boot race with 21 goals – five behind Levante’s Alba Redondo.
Rasheedat Ajibade (Atletico Madrid Women)
In another thrilling match, Ajibade made an impact as a substitute for Atletico Madrid, scoring a stoppage-time equaliser and salvaging a 1-1 draw against Villarreal. Her late heroics showcased her ability to make a difference even in challenging circumstances. Despite her slow start to the season, Ajibade now has nine goals for her club.
Kevin Akpoguma (Hoffenheim)
Akpoguma displayed a commendable defensive performance for Hoffenheim, despite their 2-1 defeat to Wolfsburg.
Anthony Ujah (Braunschweig)
The match between Bundesliga 2 sides Eintracht Braunschweig and Greuther Fürth ended in a 2-2 draw, with ex-Eagles striker Ujah opening the score for Braunschweig.
However, Dickson Abiama’s determined effort led to a spirited comeback by Greuther Fürth, resulting in both teams sharing the points.
Chidozie Awaziem (Hajduk Split)
Awaziem’s return was marked by a goal in Hajduk Split’s HNL game week 34 encounter against Osijek.
Awaziem’s contribution proved crucial as Hajduk Split secured a commanding victory with a comprehensive 3-0 scoreline.
Olayinka, Ogbu (Slavia Prague)
Slavia Prague suffered a setback in their title aspirations as they fell to a 3-2 defeat to city rivals Sparta Prague. Despite the efforts of defender Igoh Ogbu, in the absence of striker Peter Olayinka, Slavia couldn’t prevent the defeat.
Rafiu Durosinmi (Plzen)
In a match between Viktoria Plzen and Sigma Olomouc, 20-year-old Durosinmi opened the score with his third goal of the campaign for Plzen.
However, Dele Israel played a pivotal role in Sigma Olomouc’s remarkable comeback, contributing to their impressive 3-1 victory.
Nwankwo Obiora (Chaves)
AFCON 2013 winner Obiora made a significant impact in Chaves’ Primeira Liga game week 32 fixture against Paços Ferreira. Obiora netted his first goal for Chaves, contributing to their commanding 2-0 home win.
Chaves displayed exceptional teamwork and determination, resulting in a well-deserved victory.
Abdulrahman Taiwo (Trnava)
Taiwo continued his impressive goal-scoring form for Spartak Trnava, securing a double in their commanding 3-0 triumph away to Podbrezová.
Taiwo’s outstanding performance propelled Trnava to the convincing victory. He has now scored four goals in his last five games across all competitions.
Nsima Peter (Nordic)
Nsima Peter proved to be the hero for United Nordic as he scored the winning goal in their 3-1 away victory over Sylvia. Peter’s goal sealed United Nordic’s fourth consecutive victory, highlighting their current winning form and his own goal-scoring ability.
Blessing Muyiwa (Dynamo Kiev)
‘Benito’ Muyiwa showcased his creative abilities by providing an assist for Dinamo Kiev’s first goal in their disappointing 3-2 loss at home to Chornomorets.
Despite Muyiwa’s contribution, Kiev couldn’t secure a favourable result, and the defeat will surely be a setback in their campaign.
Effiong Nsungusi (Atyrau)
Nsungusi played a crucial role in Atyrau’s home league match against Shakhter Karagandy.
After facing an early setback, Nsungusi scored the vital equaliser, inspiring Atyrau’s impressive comeback and leading them to a 2-1 victory. Atyrau showcased resilience and determination, securing an important win.