Liverpool loanee, Taiwo Awoniyi continued his bright start to the season, scoring the opener in Royal Excel Mouscron’s 2-1 loss to Zulte-Waregem in the Belgian First Division A on Sunday afternoon.
The only goal of the first half was scored by the Nigeria U23 international 16 minute into the game, when he used his strength to evade a defender before making a run into the box to fire past goalkeeper Nicola Leali.
However, the goal turned out to be only a consolation as Aaron Leya Iseka equalized for Zulte-Waregem before providing an assist for the game-winning goal netted by Sandy Walsh on 66 minutes.
Awoniyi has now scored twice and assisted one goal in all the four games he has featured for Royal Excel Mouscron so far this season.
Former Nigeria U23 invitee Peter Olayinka, also put in a decent showing in his full shift for Zulte-Waregem.
With the win, Zulte-Waregem are fourth placed with 13 points, same points as Mouscron, who have an inferior goal difference.
Mikel: Zambia Is In Good Spirit But It’s Time To Wrap It Up
Super Eagles skipper, Mikel Obi is not getting carried away by Nigeria being tipped the favourites to outclass Zambia.
The Tianjin Teda midfielder, John Obi Mikel is not underating the Zambians and has dismissed their Underdog Tag.
Serious Task Ahead
Mikel, knowing what is astake, has however given an insight of what the Super Eagles will do come next week Saturday.
Having defeated Algeria home and away, Mikel believes the Super Eagles will have to take Zambia seriously.
But he is confident Nigeria will grab the the ticket to the World Cup in Russia with a victory.
”I must admit that I applaud the resurgence of the Zambians this late in the qualifiers.
Beating Algeria home and away is no mean feat,” Mikel told thenff.com.
”We will take them very serious on 7th October because they clearly have a new spirit. It is time we wrap this up.”
In conclusion, the former Chelsea ace heaped praise on his teammates and the technical crew.
He explained that the Super Eagles’ imminent World Cup qualification is due to the crew’s hardwork and positive approach.
Mikel added : ”We have all shown professionalism, dedication and determination to be at the pole position in a group tagged ‘Group of Death.’
“Commendations must go to the entire team and the Coach, but we must finish it up in Uyo and secure our ticket right there.”
Bondo To Decide Nigeria Versus Zambia Affair
39-year old Bostwana referee, Joshua Bondo will take charge of proceedings of Nigeria’s match against Zambia.
Bondo who has been an international referee for the past 10 years will take charge of the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier in Uyo next week Saturday.
FIFA has chosen Bondo alongside his countrymen, Oamogetse Godisamang, 40, and Tirelo Mositwane, 30, to rule over the game.
Godisamang, an international assistant referee since year 2010 will serve as Assistant Referee 1, while Tirelo Mositwane, an international referee since 2013 will serve as Fourth Official.
Souru Phatsoane from Lesotho will be the Assistant Referee 2 for the October 7 showdown.
South Africa’s Mr. Carlos Manuel Neves Henriques will be the Referee Assessor while Sudanese Osama Hassan Ataaelmanan is the match commissioner.
Hassan was also the Match Commissioner for the game between Nigeria and Cameroon in Yaounde on September 4.
Battle Of Champions
A win in Uyo will see three –time African champions, Nigeria seal a sixth FIFA World Cup appearance in Russia.
2012 Africa Cup of Nations winners, Zambia, will face the champions of the 2013, Nigeria, on October 7.
The make-or-break game will Kick –off at 5pm at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, Uyo.
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