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Argentina 2-4 Nigeria: Observations and Ratings

Just like they finished 2016 on high with the 3-1 victory over Algeria, the Super Eagles of Nigeria end 2017 with the whitewash as Argentina changed to black from sky blue.

It was a match of two halves for both teams as i am about to highlight my little positives and negatives from the whole entertaining one and half hour of football witnessed on the pitch in Krasnodar Russia.

Daniel Akpeyi: The Olympic medalist put himself in a one corner for selection with another horrendous mistake which shows someone under immense pressure.

Every good thing he did was mare by that kindergarten error.

He made two mistakes:

1. He catch the ball and throw it on the floor, the next action expected from him by the referee is to kick the ball out for play to resume, using the hand to touch the ball again will attract an indirect free-kick inside the box and yellow card for time wasting.

2. You don't throw the ball on the ground with Argentines(oppositions) strolling around your box.

Central defenders(AWAZIEM-EKONG-BALOGUN): The trio were all over the place in the first half as Leon Balogun was beaten for pace time after time at left centre back position and the goal scored by Aguero is a good example of it but they improved in the second half.
Shehu Abdullahi & Ola Aina: They had a first half as they struggled to do the attacking and the defending.

For Aina to succeed in that role,he must use his left foot more and Hull City must also feature him there more.

Di Maria and Dybala had enough fun running behind the two wing players.

Wilfred Ndidi,John Ogu and John Obi Mikel: They struggled to get their bearing right in the first half and were completely played out of the park.

In the Second half, Mikel who was stranded upfront in the first half drop deeper and he started every move for the goals.

Ogu provided the much needed defensive shield while Ndidi was dropping into the Centre back positions to clear or nod dangerous balls and it should be added that the Leicester City midfielder was involved in the move for the third goal.
Alexander Iwobi: Virtually his best match in the green and white.

Won the free-kick for the first goal after a one-two combination with Captain John Obi Mikel late in the first half.

Picked his spot very well for the equalizer and completed the annihilation with a superb nutmeg in the 'toros' of Javier Mascherano with two other defenders left for dead before picking his spot beautifully for Nigeria fourth.

Kelechi 'Promise' Iheanacho: This is undeniably his best show as a senior national team player bringing back the memories of his U-17 days with trademark end products.

I made mention of the danger his free-kicks possesses here ☞http://www.nigfooty.com/2017/11/algeria-1-1-nigeria-observations-and.html some days ago and he prove me right with that excellent first goal.

Kelechi friendship and understanding with Iwobi finished the Argentines and the former Manchester city striker made outstanding runs for Mikel's slide rule passes and was involved in all Nigeria three goals before his substitution.

Brian Idowu and Tyronne Ebuehi: Both players have been under the radar for long.
Tyronne waited for his chance and he played a good script for us with balance in attacking and defending, he kept his client at bay and didn't miss any ball.

Idowu brought something different to the left wing position, something Marcos Alonso will relate to.

The Russian deceit defender took his goal well with suspected weaker right foot.

Francis Uzoho: Composed and solid in Aerial duties.

His emergence is a relief to that position in the interim.

Ahmed Musa: Assisted the last goal with a pinpoint pass.

Continued from where Iheanacho stopped.

Kenneth Omeruo: Rugged performance and was careful not to make a mistake.

Olanrewaju Kayode: N/A

Not tested: Chidiebere Nwakali

Caution! Caution!!

Beware of quick free-kick just like from Aguero when he snatch the ball from the sorry Akpeyi.

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