Super Eagles players’ ratings from their final AFCON qualifiers against the Benin Republic and Lesotho

How Super Eagles players fared in both games.

Super Eagles of Nigeria beat The Benin Republic and Lesotho in their final qualifiers played in March 2021  (Instagram/Super Eagles)

The Super Eagles, in late March 2021, completed their 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifiers with two wins against The Benin Republic and Lesotho.

Nigeria beat the Benin Republic 1-0 away and then rounded up the qualifiers with a 3-0 win at home against Lesotho.

But how did the Super Eagles players fare in these games?

Goalkeeper

Maduka Okoye (7/10)

Played only the game against The Benin Republic and didn’t have enough to deal in the whole 90 minutes.

Super Eagles dominated the game from start to finish and the defence did well to protect Okoye.

Francis Uzoho (6/10)

Uzoho made his first Super Eagles appearance for the first time in more than a year since he sustained that serious injury in a friendly against Brazil in October 2019.

He played all 90 minutes and still had very little to deal with in the one-sided game.

The goalkeeper was beaten, although the goal was cancelled for offside but in that moment, he didn’t look so assured between the post.

Defenders

Ola Aina (6/10)

Played 83 minutes of the game against The Benin Republic and was involved in a lot of forward play from the right.

Aina is talented, and he is always a delight going forward.

Tyronne Ebuehi (6/10)

Ebuehi got the right-back role for the home game against Lesotho and held down that position well. He defended well, although there was not much going forward.

Leon Balogun (7/10)

Balogun was very good in defence, especially away at the Benin Republic. Played well from the back also.

William Troost Ekong (7/10)

Player 90 minutes in both games and helped the Super Eagles to keep two clean sheets in two games.

Zaidu Sanusi (7/10)

Showed why he’s Super Eagles undisputed first-choice left-back. Played 90 minutes away at Benin and was only substituted late on against Lesotho.

Defended well and was also a fine outlet from the left from where he put in some decent balls in the box.

Chidozie Awaziem (3/10)

Came on in the late stages against the Benin Republic but didn’t have time to do much.

Jamilu Collins (4/10)

Came on for Sanusi in the 54th minute against Lesotho and helped keep the shape. He didn’t play much going forward.

Midfielders

Wilfred Ndidi (8/10)

One of the best defensive midfielders in world football, Ndidi didn’t look like he broke any sweat in both games.

Against Lesotho, he was even better.

Joe Aribo (6/10)

Played the whole 90 minutes against Benin but offered nothing special. Had some nice passes in midfield, but those runs into the opposition box that make him a goal threat were missing.

Oghenekaro Etebo (7/10)

Had a good game against Lesotho and dominated the midfield. He scored a fine goal to cap his performance.

Forwards

Kelechi Iheanacho (8/10)

Arrived for national duties in his best form, and it showed on the pitch. From the start of both games, Iheanacho oozed class in both games. Playing off the striker, he looked to always make defence-splitting passes.

He had an assist against Lesotho and had a hand in all the goals against Lesotho.

Samuel Chukwueze (5/10)

Played on from the start for the two games and was only taken off in the 83rd minute of the Lesotho game.

Had some flashes of his brilliance but didn’t exert himself in the game. Had a hand in Etebo’s goal against Lesotho.

Henry Onyekuru (7/10)

Had a brilliant first half against the Benin Republic and was unlucky to have a goal to his name in that game.

Had everything, pace, trickery and made some troubling runs into the opposition defence. Forced the goalkeeper to a save with a header late in the first half.

Didn’t really do much in the second half of that game.

Against Lesotho, he came on and assisted Paul Onuachu with a flick-on pass against Lesotho.

Victor Osimhen (8/10)

Fired blanks against Benin but not from lack of effort. Was a handful for the Benin Republic defence and narrowly missed a couple of chances.

Against Lesotho, he got his goal and assisted Etebo.

Paul Onuachu (9/10)

Came in the second half of both games and scored in both. An important late-minute header against Benin Republic and a well-taken goal for Nigeria’s third against Lesotho.

Made a statement about his place in the Super Eagles team with both goals.

Alex Iwobi (4/10)

Missed the game against Benin Republic because of a positive COVID-19 result but played 74 minutes of the game against Lesotho after he was cleared to play.

Played from the left side of attack and struggled to make much impact.

Anayo Iwuala (4/10)

Keen to make an impression on his debut, Iwuala had some nice moments in both games but didn’t make the good decision when he needed to.

After dribbling past opponents in both games, he should have passed to someone in the box, but instead attempted a shot at goal in both occassions that were blocked.

Ahmed Musa

Played just a few minutes against Lesotho and didn’t have much time to do anything.

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