7 League Games In Europe Involving Super Eagles Stars To Watch
The weekend is upon again and there are many league games across Europe that will be worth watching.
The actions started Friday night as we saw Kenneth Omeruo in action as Leganes pulled a scoreless draw away against Celta Vigo.
IZUCHUKWU OKOSI presents seven other matches to watch by Nigerian football faithful involving Nigerian players.
1. Inter vs Udinese
Super Eagles defender William Troost Ekong will play in the centre of Udinese’s three man defence when they face Inter Milan away at the Giuseppe Meaza Saturday evening at 6pm Nigerian time.
Inter lost 1-0 to Juventus last weekend and will hope to bounce back to winning ways with a win over the Zebras.
Inter are third in the Serie A table while Udinese are just above the relegation places in 17th place after a run of just one win in ten league games.
An interesting battle in prospect to watch is the one between Ekong and Inter Milan captain Mauro Icardi.
2. Crystal Palace vs Leicester
Its the Eagles versus the Foxes at Selhurst Park on Saturday 4pm Nigerian time and the Nigerian duo of Wilfred Ndidi and Kelechi Iheanacho are expected to play their parts in Leicester’s away fixture.
Ndidi, one of the Premier League’s best tacklers is expected to start but Kelechi Iheanacho could come off the bench as first choice striker Jamie Vardy makes a return from injury.
James Madison has been the most promising Leicester player so far this season but hopefully Iheanacho will up his ante and make the most of any opportunity he gets.
Ndidi has not disappointed in his position. It will be interesting to see how he breaks up the play of nimble footed Palace’s players.
Torino vs Juventus
Super Eagles defender Ola Aina will be hoping to play in Torino’s battle of the capital clubs against league leaders Juventus 8.30pm Nigerian time on Saturday.
Playing the Old Lady is tough and expecting a win and perhaps even a draw is a little too optimistic.
If Aina plays, it will be interesting to watch how he negates the attacking threats of Paulo Dybala and incisive runs of right back Joao Cancelo.
Levante vs Barcelona
Moses Simon has played just four La Liga games and scored once this season for Levante.
The Super Eagles star who is gradually making his way back to fitness after months of an injury setback is not likely to start but while Roger Marti may be Levante’s star man so far this season with eight goals, from Nigeria’s perspective, it will also be nice to see the forward have a great game.
Lionel Messi and co will undoubtedly steal the show in this match between the leaders and sixth placed Levante that kicks off 8.45pm on Saturday but Simon could run rings around the Barca defence if he gets his chance to shine.
5. Istanbul Basaksehir vs Galatasary
Super Eagles forward Henry Onyekuru will play on the left side of an attacking trio when Galatasary travel to the Basaksehir Fatih Terim Stadium 5pm on Saturday evening.
The on loan Everton man has scored four league goals in 13 matches so far this season and will be one of the key men for coach Fatih Terim whose team lost 3-2 to Porto midweek in the UEFA Champions League and consequently dropped to the Europa League.
The hosts are currently the Super Lig table toppers while Onyekuru’s team are seventh in the table. A good money should be on Onyekuru to score this weekend and help his team climb the league table.
6. Besiktas vs Trabzonspor
Still in Turkey another interesting game to look forward to is the Sunday evening clash (5pm, Nigerian time) between fourth placed Besiktas and sixth placed Trabzonspor parading Nigerian international Eddy Ogenyi Onazi.
The Super Eagles midfielder was in impressive form last weekend for his team as he scored in their 3-0 win over Konyaspor and duly made the league’s Team of the Week.
A consistent run of fantastic games should stand him in good stead to return to the Super Eagles fold in March 2019.
7. Watford vs Cardiff
Isaac Success now has a chance to play regularly for his club and country as injury to Andre Gray at Watford and inconsistent performances by the Nigerian strikers and wingers abroad means there is no assured second choice striker behind Odion Ighalo.
The jury will once again be out on Success as his team welcome Cardiff at 4pm Nigerian time.
Success did not score in Watford’s 2-2 draw against Everton on Monday night but he was a handful for the Toffees with his confrontations with Yerry Mina and a denied penalty when he was brought down by the Colombian some of the talking points from the game.
The former youth international will have to have better goal scoring record (one goal in 16 EPL games so far this season) if he hopes to have a memorable stint at the Vicarage Road like Ighalo. Hopefully it starts against the Bluebirds on Saturday.