The final games for the UEFA Champions League qualifiers were played on Wednesday, and it a tale of contrasting fortunes for Nigerian players involved
Super Eagles striker Cyriel Dessers and his Rangers side were knocked out of the UEFA Champions League after falling to a 5-1 loss to PSV Eindhoven at the Philips Stadion, Soccernet reports.
After a 2-2 draw at Ibrox last week, Rangers had an almost impossible task on their hands, as they had to travel to Netherlands for the return leg of their Champions League qualifier against PSV Eindhoven.
Dessers is no stranger to Dutch football, and Michael Beale included him in his starting lineup for the fixture. Unfortunately, it did not go as planned.
PSV were just a notch higher than Rangers for most of the night. Dessers cut a lonely figure in the attack, as he did not get a lot of service. Eventually, the Dutch giants scored in the first half. Dessers was taken off in the 61st minute after failing to register any attempt on goal.
Ismael Saibari scored for PSV in the second half, but Rangers drew one back in the 64th minute. After that, the home side reached another level. Goals from Luuk de De Jong, Joey Veerman, and an own goal from Connor Goldson ensured it ended 5-1 in Netherland. This means that Rangers will play in the Europa League this season.
Meanwhile, in Greece, it was a celebration for Nigerian stars Chidera Ejuke and Alhassan Yusuf as Antwerp defeated AEK Athens 2-1 to book their Champions League spot.
Ejuke was on the bench throughout the game, while Yusuf was introduced in the 83rd minute. Gyrano Kerk opened the scoring for Antwerp in the 73rd minute, but Sergio Araujo drew level for the hosts in the 90th minute. But Michel-Ange Balikwisha scored the winning goal for Antwerp in stoppage time.