It was a tale of two sides for Nigerians that featured in the Europa League on Thursday night as they ended up with mixed fortunesVictor Mosesstarted for Chelsea against Rubin Kazan on Thursday at Stamford and helped the European champions to a 3-1 first leg lead. Moses, who also scored against Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League, struck in the 32nd minute to give Chelsea a 2-0 lead after Fernando Torres had opened scoring in the 16th minute.
The Nigerian had a 91% pass completion rate in 50 touches on the ball and won all his aerial duels. He also successfully completed two dribbles and had three shots.
Before his goal in the 32nd minute, his attempted header was saved but Torres kept the ball alive and when the second chance fell to him, he swept a spectacular volley past Sergei Ryzhikov, in goal for Rubin Kazan. He was replaced in the 65th minute by Eden Hazard. Compatriot Mikel Obi was an unused substitute in the encounter.
In Istanbul where Ogenyi Onazi’s Lazio confronted Joseph Yobo’s Fenerbahce, the young Lazio midfielder collected two yellow cards in the space of 16 minutes to leave the Italian club with a mountain to climb. Fenerbahce capitalised on the one-man advantage and scored two goals – in the 78th minute through a penalty by Pierre Webo and a 90th minute goal by Dirk Kuyt.The second leg of the encounters come up next week Thursday to decide which teams will move ahead to the semi-finals.