This week, as is every other week on the Nigerian players abroad focus, we take a look at the exploits of Nigerian players abroad. Those who played, those who shone, and those who were nowhere to be found.
We start off in England today where Emmanuel Emenike scored his first goals (a brace) for West Ham United as they dismantled Championship side Blackburn Rovers 5-1 in the fifth round of the FA Cup. The win propels the Hammers to the quarterfinals where they could face Manchester United and while the 28-year old must be happy to have opened his account, he must wish he could have scored a hat-trick.
His compatriot at the club, Victor Moses also got on the score-sheet in the feisty encounter which saw both sides reduced to 10-men. Still in the FA Cup, John Obi Mikel started for Chelsea and enjoyed a big win as they smashed Manchester City 5-1. Mikel and his teammates will however know they may have found it a bit more difficult if City hadn’t fielded a weakened side on the day.
Kelechi Iheanacho, as expected, started in attack for the Citizens but couldn’t do anything to stop them from going down to the Premier League champions at Stamford Bridge. In Portugal, Simeon Tochukwu scored a brace for Gil Vicente as they beat Benfica B 3-2.
And in Turkey, Raheem Lawal scored his first goal for Osmanlispor against his former side Mersin Idmanyurdu. Kenneth Omeruo played all 90 minutes as usual for Kasimpasa as they won 2-1 against Eskisehirspor. He however picked up a 34th minute yellow card.
Out-of-favour Nigeria international Sunday Mba scored a brace for Yeni Malatyaspor as they thrashed Elazigspor.
In France, Elderson Echiejile started for the second game in a row since his return from Injury as Monaco defeated Troyes 3-1 in Ligue 1. Vincent Enyeama also started for Lille in their game against Lyon.
Anthony Ujah fired blanks as Werder Bremen were beaten 2-0 by Ingolstad to mount more misery on them as they battle with relegation in the Bundesliga. Leon Balogun played all 90 minutes, was booked, and couldn’t stop Mainz from losing 3-2 to Hoffenheim. And in Serie A Ogenyi Onazi was once again an unused substitute in Lazio’s 0-0 draw at Frosinone.