Games went down yesterday in the Champions League and Europa League qualifiers with a number of Nigerian players involved
First, AC Milan target
Raphael Onyedika, the Nigerian midfielder being monitored by AC Milan was involved from start to finish in FC Midjtylland’s 3-1 home loss to Benfica in the third round of the Champions League playoffs.
Onyedika also got yellow-carded in the game as the Danish club will focus their attention on the Europa League. They never looked like they were up to the task against Benfica, losing 7-2 on aggregate.
The Nigerian midfielder however gave his suitors something to chew in the game as they finalise plans to take him to the Serie A.
Onyedika had a pass accuracy of 84% in the game with his heatmap showing great movements.
He won just two of his six ground duels and completed one of his three long balls. The midfielder has had better days but there’s promise in there.
No show for Boniface
Rangers bounced back from a 2-0 defeat in Belgium against Union Saint Gilloise to trounce the Belgians 3-0 in the third round of the Champions League playoffs.
USG were without their new Nigerian import, Victor Boniface who wasn’t dressed at all for the game. His club will now trade tackles in the Europa League after losing on a 3-2 aggregate to last year’s Europa League finalists.
And the Rest
In Sheriff Tiraspol’s 2-1 loss to Czech’s Viktoria Plzen, Nigerian forward Rasheed Akanbi scored the Moldovan league side’s only goal of the game.
The lanky forward recently moved to Tiraspol and has hit the ground running.
Mathias Oyewusi Kehinde was on the scoresheet for Zalgiris in their 6-1 aggregate loss to Norway’s Bodo Glimt.
Zalgiris held Bodo at home 1-1 but a first leg 5-0 loss will be rued as they drop to the Europa League.
Former U-17 international, Yusuf Otubanjo also started for Pjunik Yerevan as they lost on an 7-0 aggregate score to Partizan Belgrade. Otubanjo was subbed off in the 64th minute of the game.
In the Europa League
Former Plateau United forward, Sunday Adetunji scored the consolation for North Macedonia’s Shkupi as they lost at home to Shamrock Rovers, from the Republic of Ireland.
Shamrock featured young Irish-Nigerian, Aidomo Emakhu for the last ten minutes of the game as they won 5-2 on aggregate.