The leagues across the world return this weekend with some exciting matches involving Nigerian players. The women’s national team, the Super Falcons as well will be in action as they aim to conquer African again. Newslegend.com.ng’s IZUCHUKWU OKOSI highlights five matches we can’t wait to watch this weekend.
1. Nigeria vs South Africa (Nigeria aim to retain AWCON title)
Africa’s women champions, Nigeria’s Super Falcons, will seek to extend their dominance on the African continent as they take on South Africa in the final of the 2018 CAF Africa Women’s Cup of Nations on Saturday at the Accra Sports Complex.
The Bayana Bayana shocked their more illustrious opponents 1-0 in their opening Group B game but the Falcons have scored ten goals in two games against Mali and Equatorial Guinea plus they edged out Cameroon 4-2 on penalties in the semifinals after a scoreless 120 minutes.
Nigeria have won the tournament eight times from previous ten editions and this is game that will be followed not only by women’s football enthusiasts but those who follow the men’s game. We expect a difficult game but one that Nigeria’s experience will see them winning.
2. Barcelona vs Villarreal (Samuel Chukwueze faces Pique, Umtiti)
From his Golden Eaglets days we know Samuel Chukwueze was a diamond in the making.
First it was Salzburg of Austria that was linked with the left footed forward but somehow he finds himself playing for Villarreal – “Villarreal?!” exclaims one of the match commentators in the South Africa versus Nigeria (AFCON qualifier) whilst talking about Nigeria’s prospects in attack. That shows how far his talent and agents’ hard work can take him!
This weekend the youngster who played in the international friendly against Uganda in Asaba on November 20 faces world class defenders like Gerard Pique and Samuel Umtiti in arguably La Liga’s biggest game of the weekend. Only last time out he scored in a 2-1 win over Real Betis.
Will Chukwueze help the Yellow Submarines win on the road for the first time since match day six- Naija fans will be following this match closely.
3. Arsenal vs Tottenham (Iwobi To Play in tough North London Derby)
Head coach Unai Emery did not prosecute Thursday night’s Europa League game against Vorskla Portalva with most of his first team players including Alex Iwobi as Sunday’s north London derby beckons.
Iwobi under the new boss has been magnificent, totally improved as a player different from the one seen when Arsene Wenger was in charge at the Emirates.
Iwobi may not be a high scoring midfielder/forward but the player is expected to contribute massively to the Gunners’ attacking forays with chances created.
4. Leicester vs Watford (Ndidi, Iheanacho take on Success)
Isaac Success has signed a contract extension at the Vicarage Road and will remain a Watford player until at least 2023 and this could potentially be one of his best games for Watford this season as he will be buoyed to start repaying the club’s belief in him.
The former youth international will face his Nigerian compatriots Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanacho at Leicester’s King Power Stadium and it promises to be an exciting watch when these three former Nigeria youth internationals confront each other.
Watford’s fantastic early season form has dipped and Javi Gracia’s team will be hoping to revive it. Leicester on their part will keen to stay in the top half of the table.
5. Bordeaux vs PSG (It’s Samuel Kalu up against money bags)
Samuel Kalu is one of the exciting new additions to the Ligue 1 this season and he will play against some of the world’s best defenders this weekend when Bordeaux hope to gain a first Ligue 1 win since the start of October against Paris Saint Germain – a really tough task.
Kalu a revelation for the Nigerian national team in recent 2019 AFCON qualifiers was in action for Bordeaux in their Thursday night’s Europa League clash against Slavia Prague which his team won 2-0.
The PSG game on Sunday evening may not be in their favour but expect an electric performance from Kalu whom Nigerians will be hoping at least scores against the money bags.