Iheanacho vs Man Utd, Onyeka against Chelsea and other Nigerians to watch this weekend
The action resumes this weekend in domestic leagues across Europe following two weeks of international football, which had the World Cup qualifier, UEFA Nations League and international friendlies.
Nigeria’s Super Eagles were not left out as they played two matches against the Central African Republic in the African qualifying section.
The three-time African champions suffered a shock 1-0 defeat at home before gaining their revenge with a 2-0 win in Douala, Cameroon.
The players have now returned to their respective clubs ahead of the return to league football. Soccernet takes a look at some of the Nigerian players to watch out for as club football returns this weekend.
In England, Kelechi Iheanacho and Frank Onyeka are the two players to watch. Iheanacho had been used mainly as a substitute in the league this season, but he showed why he deserved to start more games after he scored on his first start in Leicester City’s 2-2 draw against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park just before the international break.
The 25-year-old will now hope to get his second start of the season when Brendan Rodgers men welcome Manchester United to the King Power Stadium on Saturday.
Iheanacho scored twice against United in the FA Cup last season, and he could be the man again to fire the Foxes to victory on Saturday.
Meanwhile, at the Brentford Community Stadium, Frank Onykea will hope to feature in Brentford’s clash against table-toppers Chelsea on Saturday evening.
Onyeka, who played the two games against CAR, started the season well, but a coronavirus positive test halted his progress.
But having featured against Liverpool and West Ham from the start, he will hope to be included in the lineup against the Blues.
Also, Alex Iwobi could make his return against West Ham after missing Everton’s trip to Old Trafford and Nigeria’s games against CAR.
There’s no other name to look out for in the Italian Serie A other than Victor Osimhen. Osimhen has started the season like a house on fire and will hope to continue in the same vein when he comes up against his international teammate Ola Aina in Napoli’s clash against Torino.
Osimhen has scored four goals in six league games this season, but Aina will be eager to deny him and his Napoli teammates on Sunday.
In other games, Simy Nwankwo will hope to open his account when Salernitana welcome Spezia, while Ebuehi could feature for Venezia in their game against Fiorentina.
Like Osimhen, Taiwo Awoniyi has also started the season in good form. The 23-year-old has settled in well at Union Berlin following his permanent move from Liverpool.
Awoniyi has scored five goals in seven league games this season, with only Robert Lewandowski, Erling Haaland and Patrick Schick scoring more in the German top-flight.
Union host Wolfsburg this weekend, and Awoniyi will hope to add to his tally.
Meanwhile, Kevin Akpoguma could return to Hoffenheim’s starting XI when they welcome FC Cologne.
Ligue 1 will see Samuel Kalu and Moses Simon come up against each other as Bordeaux take on Nantes this Sunday.
Simon has been Nantes best player this season with five assists and one goal to his name. His performance will be key for Nantes if they are to get anything from the game.
Kalu, meanwhile, will be hoping to kickstart his season following a difficult start. Although he has scored one goal, he is yet to kick fully into gear.
Meanwhile, Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr will be present to watch the two players.
He hasn’t played since May, but Samuel Chukwueze could finally return this weekend when Villarreal host Osasuna.
Chukwueze has shown glimpses of his sharpness with a well-taken goal in training, and that could earn him a spot in Unai Emery’s squad for Sunday’s clash.