Too Good, Too Bad: The Best & Worst of Nigerians Abroad

Trabzonspor Antalyaspor Anthony Nwakaeme 05042019
Goal review the nation’s best performers around the world this weekend, and pick out a few who must improve

  1. Too Good: Sone Aluko

    Too Good: Sone Aluko

    Following a wretched run of results in which Beijing Renhe failed to pick up a win since gameweek five, they went into their encounter with Guangzhou R&F seeking only their second success of the campaign.

    When Aluko put the Fengtai outfit ahead in the second minute of the game, the bottom side seemed set to shock their more fancied hosts.

    Even though Renhe eventually fell to a 3-1 defeat, Aluko’s performance didn’t merit being on the losing side.

    Besides scoring (which was his third league goal of the season), the accuracy of his passing was admirable, and he put in a shift from time to time in trying to win the ball back for his team.

    Beijing Renhe’s loss sees them rooted to foot of the table, but Aluko’s encouraging performance offers a glimmer of hope going forward.

  2. Too Bad: Ola Aina

    Too Bad: Ola Aina

    Torino travelled to relegation-threatened Empoli seeking to keep their top six aspirations alive.

    However, they were stunned by the Blues who picked up an unforeseen 4-1 victory.

    Having been out of the side in recent weeks, Walter Mazzarri finally gave Aina a start at left wing-back, but the decision backfired spectacularly.

    It was the loanee’s error that allowed Afriyie Acquah to open the scoring for the lowly hosts, and he never recovered till his early withdrawal in the 53rd minute.

    The Bull’s loss has put their European dream in jeopardy, as they now have to hope results go their way on the final day if they’re to feature on the continent next season.

  3. Too Good: Moses Simon

    Too Good: Moses Simon

    Levante failed to hang on to a 2-0 lead before playing out to a 2-2 draw against 10-man Atletico Madrid, but Simon was brilliant in his cameo appearance.

    The wideman was introduced in the final 20 minutes, and gave a really good account of himself against Diego Simeone’s side.

    Simon incessantly had the beating of his marker, didn’t lose possession of the ball and won all his six duels after coming on.

    Despite his side’s defensive struggles against 10 men, it was a promising way for the winger to end the season.

  4. Too Bad: Sylvester Igboun

    Too Bad: Sylvester Igboun

    FC Ufa welcomed Orenburg to the Neftyanik Stadium searching for a win which could have put them in contention to avoid the relegation playoffs.

    They didn’t seize the opportunity, though, falling to a 2-0 defeat which will see them play Krylya Sovetov in the battle to avoid the drop.

    Sly didn’t impress with his performance on the day, and was often guilty of losing possession with reckless abandon for the entirety of the fixture.

    He also lost an inordinate number of his duels against the mid-table side, and the performance surely wouldn’t live long in the forward’s memory.

  5. Too Good: Anthony Nwakaeme

    Too Good: Anthony Nwakaeme

    Third spot was still within reach for Trabzonspor when they played host to Besiktas on Saturday evening.

    Given they were five points adrift of their visitors before kick-off, Nwakaeme and co. knew they needed maximum points to keep the battle going into the final round of the season.

    A 2-1 success was just what the doctor ordered, and while Nwakaeme didn’t score or assist, he was one of Black Sea Storm’s best players on the day.

    He created a plethora of shooting opportunities for his teammates and completed all four of his attempted dribbles.

    While Trabzonspor are sure of a place in the Europa League qualifying rounds, usurping Besiktas on the final day guarantees participation in the competition's group stage, and it's an opportunity they will not pass up.