Nigeria picked the maximum points, but it was an underwhelming performance from the lads
Super Eagles forward Moses Simon won the Man of the Match award in Nigeria’s 1-0 win over Guinea-Bissau at the Stade Felix Houphouet-Boigny, Soccernet.ng reports.
It was an underwhelming performance from coach Jose Peseiro’s lads, as they barely scraped past Guinea-Bissau. The Djurtus were the underdogs, but the Super Eagles showed them too much respect and did not dominate the game as many fans would have hoped.
With the 3-4-3 formation that coach Jose Peseiro employed, the midfield was quite empty most of the time as Frank Onyeka and Joe Aribo failed to stamp their authority. And they resorted to playing long balls. Some of those balls troubled the Guinea-Bissau backline, but most were speculative.
The three forwards- Victor Osimhen, Moses Simon, and Samuel Chukwueze- were poor. Osimhen was full of running as usual, but he failed to convert the chances he got. Although he could blame bad luck for his profligacy, as two of his goals were ruled out for handball, he had some clear-cut chances, which he did not use well.
Chukwueze was also not at his best, but that is quickly becoming a trademark when he dons the green and white. The worst attacker on the night was Moses Simon. Although he got the assist for the own goal that gave Nigeria the win, the Nantes man was abysmal.
His crosses were off, he completed just one of five dribbles, and he had a 73% pass accuracy. There was an occasion when he had Osimhen in the box, and he could have played a simple pass to set him up for a shot at goal, but Simon opted to go for goal and lost the ball. He also had a one-on-one opportunity early in the second half.
It was quite a big surprise when CAF announced Simon as the Man of the Match despite his performance.
🇳🇬 Moses Simon 🇳🇬
— CAF (@CAF_Online) January 22, 2024
Unarguably, Nigeria’s best player on the night was Calvin Bassey. He was solid and sturdy at centre back. He also pushed forward and created a few chances for the team because the midfield was poor.
Even Aina, who was not at his best, had a better game. In fact, Simon was not among the top three players on the night. Kenneth Omeruo, Calvin Bassey and Ola Aina were all better than Simon.