Super Eagles star Emmanuel Dennis played a key role in Watford's 1-0 victory over Sheffield United in their Skybet Championship opening game of the season at Vicarage Road.
Super Eagles star Emmanuel Dennis helps Watford to an opening day win but Maduka Okoye is left out
It was a night of mixed fortunes for Nigerian stars as Watford kicked off their quest for promotion to the Premier League with a win.
Dennis was in action for the whole 90 minutes despite speculations surrounding his future. The Nigerian international, who has been linked with a move to Everton and Newcastle, had a hand in Joao Pedro's winner.
Watford started the game brightly, with Dennis playing in Ismaila Sarr, but the winger's strike hit the side netting.
Dennis role in Watford's goal
The Hornets continued to push forward but could not find the opener in the first half. However, it all changed eleven minutes into the second half as a quick counter-attack that involved Dennis and Sarr resulted in the only goal of the game.
The Nigerian international set up Sarr with a fine pass, who squared the resulting ball for Pedro to tap home. It was a brilliant performance from Dennis, who had one shot on target and completed six dribbles.
No show for Okoye, Ekong, Kalu
However, while it was a good night for Dennis, it was a no-show for other Nigerian stars at Watford. Super Eagles vice-captain William Troost-Ekong was left on the bench, while Maduka Okoye and Samuel Kalu were not in the matchday squad.
The reason for their absence was not disclosed, but Watford manager Rob Edwards had declared before the match that Okoye would be his second-choice goalkeeper. Next up for the Hornets is a trip to the Hawthorns on August 8, where they will take on West Brom.