Wednesday Oct 05, 2016. 19:30
Nigeria’s Super Eagles defeated Plateau United 3-0 in a test game preparatory to Sunday’s World Cup qualifier in Zambia with Arsenal star Alex Iwobi again catching the eye with a brace.
Iwobi crowned a superb individual display when in the 54th
minute he combined well with Manchester City forward Kelechi Iheanacho to double the Eagles lead.
He fired his second goal on the stroke of full time off a rebound.
His father, Chuka, in the stands could not have been prouder.
Gent of Belgium defensive midfielder Anderson Esiti opened scoring in the 36th minute following a fine solo run.
Esiti’s fellow holding midfield colleague Shehu Abdullahi was solid for the Eagles.
After a cautious start by both sides, Rangers forward Chisom Egbuchulam spurned the first clear-cut chance after nine minutes.
Plateau United, who finished 11th this past season, played more as a team than the Eagles with winger Bright Silas and overlapping defender Kelechi John outstanding for the Jos club.
The Eagles struggled to impose themselves on the match up to the first half an hour, before they upped their game.
In the second, what looked like the starting XI for Sunday’s match were introduced wholesale with right-back Musa Mohammed the only survivor from the first half.
It was a better contest after the interval with a lot more intensity.
However, Olympiacos striker Brown Ideye was wasteful in front of the Plateau goal, while Joshua Obaje and Kabiru Umar posted a more assured performance at the other end of the pitch.
There were a few slips between Eagles central defenders Kenneth Omeruo and William Troost-Ekong.
Eagles start list (4-2-3-1): Ikechukwu Ezenwa (Carl Ikeme 46) – Kingsley Madu (Elderson Echiejile 46), Musa Mohammed, Uche Agbo (Kenneth Omeruo 46), Jamiu Alimi (William Troost-Ekong 46) – Shehu Abdullahi (Ogenyi Onazi 46), Anderson Esiti (Mikel Obi 46) - Ahmed Musa (Alex Iwobi 46), Chisom Egbuchulam (Moses Simon 46), Nosa Igiebor (Kelechi Iheanacho 46) – Godwin Obaje (Brown Ideye 46)
By Kola Daniel