Nigeria got their preparations for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations underway with a 1-0 win over host and one of the favorites to lift the AFCON title Egypt at the Stephen Keshi Stadium in Asaba, Delta state, Nigeria.
Sports&study.org rates the players on display for Nigeria in the slim friendly win.
Daniel Akpeyi – Didn’t have any reason to be worried for the 45 minutes that he was on although he nicely gathered two high balls into his box. Substituted at the break for Ikechukwu Ezenwa….. 5/10
Shehu Abdullahi – Solid and assured in his tackles and interceptions but didn’t offer anything meaningful when he joined the attack. Did very well until he was substituted late into the game….. 6/10
Jamilu Collins – Not as adventurous like he was in the game against Seychelles on Friday but still put in a solid display particularly down his flank as he kept his man in check….. 6/10
William Troost-Ekong – Put up a captain like performance. Strong and committed in making challenges and also looked very assured with the ball at his feet than in previous games for Nigeria…..7/10
Leon Balogun – Didn’t look like someone who hasn’t played a minute of first team football this year at club level as he looked very fit and also showed amazing composure on the ball. Made a well-timed last ditch tackle to deny Egypt a chance to level with less than ten minutes left to play.…. 8/10
John Ogu – Set up Onuachu nicely with a well hit pass from kick off. Helped Nigeria win and keep possession for large spell of the game. His experience was very clear to see. Went off injured in the second half….. 7/10
Wilfred Ndidi – As usual covered almost every space on the pitch. A little bit careless with his passes at times but overall had another good game in the middle of the pack for Nigeria….. 7.5 / 10
Alex Iwobi – Took a while to get going and when he did, he should have scored minutes before the half time break. Didn’t influence the game as many expected him to but did put up a commendable shift….. 6/10
Moses Simon – Delivered three very good balls from set piece situation which his teammates failed to utilize. Did a good job defensively and also wiling to play forward….. 8/10
Henry Onyekuru – Struggled to get involved playing from the right side of attack. Didn’t do a lot in terms of protection for his full back Abdullahi. Not quite at same level like he was on Friday but still very exciting to watch with the ball at his feet….. 7/10
Paul Onuachu – Introduced himself in style with a goal seven seconds into his first start. Won almost everything he went for and drew fouls for his team. Showed nice footwork which is a bit surprising for a man of his size. He will surely get another chance with the Super Eagles base on his display. 9/10
Ikechukwu Ezenwa – Reacted superbly to a well struck shot by tipping it unto the bar and recovered smartly to gather the second attempt. Acquitted himself nicely….. 7/10
Oghenekaro Etebo: Didn’t provide same as Iwobi did but helped out in defence when needed….. 6/10
Semi Ajayi: Slotted into the midfield as replacement for Ogu and got involved straight away. Didn’t provide same protection like Ogu with his introduction coinciding with when Egypt dominated for large spells….. 5/10