SUPER EAGLES

Sparta Rotterdam lose despite Maduka Okoye heroics

Maduka Okoye played the full 90 minutes as Sparta Rotterdam could not make it back to back when they travelled to Twente.

Maduka Okoye's confident performance was not enough to save Sparta Rotterdam

Super Eagles goalkeeper Maduka Okoye could not save relegation-threatened Sparta Rotterdam as they lost 2-0 to Twente in the Eredivisie. Sparta Rotterdam nearly made the worst possible start when Giannis Masouras made a rash foul in the box.

Following a quick VAR review, the referee waved away protests, and the travelling side breathed a sigh of relief.

Okoye was called into action in the 10th minute when Joshua Brenet aimed a header from close range, but the Super Eagles goalkeeper pushed the ball out for a corner kick which he confidently claimed to relieve pressure on the away side.

Brenet was a real livewire, and halfway through the first half, he found former Norwich striker Ricky Van Wolfswinkel who finished into the bottom right corner to give Twente the lead.

As the first half came close to an end, Okoye had to be alert, and in the 45th minute, he dived to the left post to deny a goal-bound shot from a Twente player.

Sparta started the second half brighter and held possession for extended periods, but a quick counterattack from Twente made their job even harder. An overlapping Robin Propper's cut back from the byline found Michel Vlap, who had no problem finishing from a few inches out.

Michel Vlap nearly grabbed a brace when he controlled a long ball and broke into the Sparta penalty box, but he could not beat Okoye, who made a comfortable save to the right side of the post.

Despite a late flurry of attacks, Sparta could not get a consolation goal and now sit only points above the relegation places. Okoye and co will host Alkmaar on April 30 in the Eredivisie.

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