AFCON 2021 Qualifiers: Nigeria Fight Back To Beat Lesotho

Photo: Super Eagles Twitter Handle

 

The Super Eagles of Nigeria came from a goal down to beat the Crocodiles of Lesotho 4-2 in the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers.

Lesotho took the lead on the 13th minute before Iwobi leveled the scores for the Super Eagles.

A brace from Victor Osimhen and one from Chukwueze ensured a maximum of three points for the Super Eagles.

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Awaziem’s own goal on the 90th minute reduced the deficit for Lesotho, but the win was enough to secure a second win for the super Eagles who beat the Republic of Benin 2-1 at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo on Wednesday.

Nigeria will play Sierra Leone next year having six points and top group L.

The three-time African champions are aiming for their 19th appearance in the tournament, after winning their eighth bronze medal in the 2019 edition in Egypt.

Rohr Invites Players For 2021 AFCON Qualifiers

 

Super Eagles’ Technical Adviser Gernot Rohr has selected his squad for next month’s 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying matches against the Benin Republic and Lesotho.

Captain Ahmed Musa is making a return from injury and midfielder Ramon Azeez has been retained after seeing action in 1-1 draw international friendly match with five-time world champions Brazil in Singapore.

Goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi is called for the first time since the Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt this year summer – first choice Francis Uzoho is out for several months after his horrific injury against Brazil – and defender Kenneth Omeruo is also back, while there is another opportunity for midfielder Mikel Agu to justify his place in the team.

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France-based utility player Samuel Kalu returns after missing the prestige friendly game against Brazil. Stoke City’s Oghenekaro Etebo is on standby as a result of his injury and is being monitored.

Nigeria, who won bronze in Egypt will open their campaign for a place in Cameroon 2021 against the Squirrels of Benin Republic at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium, Uyo on Wednesday, 13th November. When that is done, the team will travel to Maseru to play the Crocodiles of Lesotho on Sunday, 17th November.

23 EAGLES TO BATTLE BENIN REPUBLIC & LESOTHO

Goalkeepers: Daniel Akpeyi (Kaizer Chiefs, South Africa); Ikechukwu Ezenwa (Heartland FC); Maduka Okoye (Fortuna Dusseldorf, Germany)

Defenders: Kenneth Omeruo (CD Leganes, Spain); Abdullahi Shehu (Bursaspor FC, Turkey); Chidozie Awaziem (CD Leganes, Spain); William Ekong (Udinese FC, Italy); Olaoluwa Aina (Torino FC, Italy); Jamilu Collins (SC Padeborn 07, Germany); Oluwasemilogo Ajayi (West Bromwich Albion, England); Bryan Idowu (Lokomotiv Moscow, Russia)

Midfielders: Alexander Iwobi (Everton FC, England); Mikel Agu (Vitoria Guimaraes, Portugal); Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester City, England); Joseph Ayodele-Aribo (Glasgow Rangers, Scotland); Ramon Azeez (Granada FC, Spain)

Forwards: Ahmed Musa (Al Nassr, Saudi Arabia); Victor Osimhen (Lille OSC, France); Moses Simon (FC Nantes, France); Samuel Chukwueze (Villarreal FC, Spain); Paul Onuachu (KRC Genk, Belgium); Emmanuel Dennis (Club Brugge, Belgium); Samuel Kalu (Girondins Bordeaux, France);

Standby: Leon Balogun (Brighton & Hove Albion, England); Peter Olayinka (SK Slavia Prague, Czech Republic); Oghenekaro Etebo (Stoke City, England)

AFCON 2021: Nigeria To Face Benin, Sierra Leone, Lesotho In Qualifiers

Team Nigeria: Giuseppe CACACE / AFP

 

Nigeria have been handed a relatively easy opponents in the qualifiers for 2021 Africa Cup of Nations.

According to the draw released by the organizers, the three-time African champions will play in Group L with Benin Republic, Sierra Leone and Lesotho.

The Super Eagles will begin their campaign for a place in the continental tournament on November 11.

The 2021 Africa Cup of Nations will be held in Cameroun from June 15 to July 23.

See the full draws below.

Preliminary Round

Liberia v Chad

South Sudan v Seychelles

Mauritius v Sao Tome e Principe

Djibouti v Gambia

First, second legs: Oct 7-15

Group A

Mali, Guinea, Namibia, Liberia/Chad

Group B

Burkina Faso, Uganda, Malawi, South Sudan/Seychelles

Group C

Ghana, South Africa, Sudan, Mauritius/Sao Tome

Group D

Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Angola, Djibouti/Gambia

Group E

Morocco, Mauritania, Central African Republic, Burundi

Group F

Cameroon (hosts), Cape Verde, Mozambique, Rwanda

Group G

Egypt, Kenya, Togo, Comoros

Group H

Algeria, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Botswana

Group I

Senegal, Congo Brazzaville, Guinea-Bissau, eSwatini (formerly Swaziland)

Group J

Tunisia, Libya, Tanzania, Equatorial Guinea

Group K

Ivory Coast, Niger, Madagascar, Ethiopia

Group L

Nigeria, Benin, Sierra Leone, Lesotho

Matchdays: Nov 11-19 (two rounds), Aug 31-Sept 8 2020 (two rounds), Oct 5-13, Nov 9-17

Note: winners and runners-up qualify from each group except F, where Cameroon automatically qualify as hosts with highest placed of other three teams

Did not enter: Eritrea, Somalia

Enyimba, Nasarawa Win, Wolves Lose In CAF Continental Games

CAFNigerian league champions Enyimba has thrashed Vital ‘O of Burundi 5-1 in a CAF Champions League second round, first leg match at the Adokiye Amiesieamaka Stadium in Port Harcourt on Sunday.

A brace each from Stephen Chukwude and Mfon Udoh, and a late strike from Leonard Ugochukwu ensured a comfortable result ahead of the return leg next week.

Enyimba qualified for the first round after a 2-1 aggregate win over Vipers SC of Uganda, while Vital‘O Club got the better of Lioli of Lesotho on the away goal rule after a 2-2 aggregate scores.

The big win assures that the return leg in Bujumbura between both teams next weekend would be an easier session for the People’s Elephant, who led 3-0 at half –time.

However, Nigeria’s second representatives in the Competition, Warri Wolves lost 0-1 at the Warri City Stadium to visiting El Merreikh of Sudan. The visitors scored in the 18th minute and Wolves could not find a way back into the game.

Former Nigeria U-17 and U-20 safe goalkeeper, Paul Danjuma saved a point blank header after 10 minutes and the visitors, who finished a man less after Toufik Guerabis was sent off for a second bookable offence in the 55th minute, were denied by the woodwork five minutes before the interval.

In the CAF Confederation Cup, Nigeria’s surviving team, Nasarawa United battled hard but could only earn a 1-0 win over Club Sportif Constantinois of Algeria at the Abuja National Stadium. Philip Azango scored as a goalmouth scramble occurred following a corner kick with only five minutes left on the clock.

Olugbenga Ashiru Dies At 66

Olugbenga AshiruA former Foreign Affairs Minister, Ambassador Olugbenga Ashiru, has died in South Africa at the age of 66, after a protracted illness.

He was Nigeria’s Foreign Affairs Minister from 2011 to 2013.

During his tenure, he was known to have highlighted the need to increase awareness about Nigeria’s economic potential but more importantly he championed what is termed citizen diplomacy where he placed emphasis on the treatment of Nigerians abroad.

In 2013, he ordered the repatriation of some South African citizens in retaliation of the ill treatment meted out on some Nigerians on account of not possessing the yellow fever vaccine card before arriving in South Africa.

Before his appointment as Foreign Affairs Minister, the late Olugbenga Ashiru was Nigeria’s envoy to the United Kingdom, Democratic People’s Republic Of Korea, South Africa and the Kingdom of Lesotho and Swaziland.

CAF Confirms Flying Eagles Qualification for 2015 AYC

Flying EaglesThe Confederation of African Football (CAF) has confirmed the qualification of Nigeria to the 2015 African Youth Championship in Senegal.

On Saturday, the Flying Eagles walked over Lesotho in a final qualifying match in Kaduna.

Lesotho refused to turn up for the match after they had expressed concerns over the outbreak of the dreaded Ebola Virus in Nigeria.

According Flying Eagles Secretary, Aliyu Auwal Ibrahim, “we have finally receive a letter from CAF informing us that we have qualified for the African Youth Championship next year in Senegal after Lesotho failed to turn up on Saturday.

“As a result of this decision, the team have been decamped on Monday and will resume in line with the coach’s build-up programme for Senegal 2015”, he said.

With this development, hosts Senegal and Nigeria have qualified for the eight-team tournament, while six other countries will book their passage in a fortnight after first leg qualifiers were played at the weekend.

The top four teams at the 2015 AYC in March will qualify for the 2015 FIFA U20 World Cup in New Zealand.

Flying Eagles Release Nwobodo, Others For Federation Cup

nwobodoMidfielder, Obinna Nwobodo, has being released by the Nigeria Under–20 national team, Flying Eagles, to feature for Enugu Rangers in a Federation Cup round of 32 clash against Insurance of Benin in Abuja on Thursday.

Nwobodo, is one of several players from the domestic league taken in by the Flying Eagles recently and Rangers Coach, John Obuh, requested for the mercurial midfielder, who has been one of the most exceptional players in the national team camp.

Other players who were released for the Federation Cup by Flying Eagles Coach, Manu Garba, are Seun Olulayo and Tunde Adeniji from Sunshine Stars, Segun Alebiosu from Kwara United and midfielder, Ifeanyi Matthew for another cup tie involving El Kanemi.

The Flying Eagles will play against Lesotho in the African Youth Championship final qualifying tie in August.

7 Job Seekers Die During Fitness Test In S. Africa

South African media say provincial authorities are investigating the deaths of seven job-seekers who collapsed in the heat while undergoing a fitness test for positions as traffic officers.

The chief transport official for KwaZulu-Natal province, Willies Mchunu, has suspended further test in the meantime.

The state-owned South African Broadcasting Corporation reported that several tens of thousands of people took the fitness test late last week, even though only 90 jobs were available. They were required to run four kilometres (2.5 miles) in temperatures of more than 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit), and many collapsed from dehydration and heat exhaustion. Some received hospital treatment.

South Africa’s official statistics show that the unemployment rate is 25 per cent, an indication why so many were applying for the 90 jobs.

W. Cup Qualifying Games: Sudan and Ghana joint leaders of Group D

The Black Stars of Ghana are now ahead with superior goal difference as Sudan defeated African champions; Zambia 2-0 to become group leaders with Ghana in group D of the 2014 World Cup  qualifying games after the opening day matches were played.

Sudan now at par with the former Gold Coast, Ghana still achieved a feat as they got the biggest victories on home soil.

The best of the two teams will however be known soonest as both teams are having away matches next.

Zambia will be fighting back to retain its recent glory as it was the Copper Bullets that knocked out Ghana in the semi-finals of the African Nations Cup which the Zambia eventually won and they will be meeting Ghana on the 9th of June in continuation of the 2014 World Cup qualifying games.