Iwobi, Osimhen score as Peseiro records first win

The Super Eagles got their 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign off to a winning start after they came from a goal down to beat Sierra Leone 2-1 at the bumpy pitch of the MKO Abiola National Stadium in Abuja, newsmen reports.

Jose Peseiro lost his first two games in charge of the team when the Eagles fell 2-1 to Mexico and 1-0 to Ecuador in the USA recently.

This Group A tie was played behind closed doors as part of the sanctions imposed on Nigeria after crowd trouble at the MKO Abiola National Stadium in Abuja during a 2022 World Cup playoffs against arch-rivals Ghana in March.

It was an entertaining contest even though it was played on a poor and bad pitch.


Visitors Sierra Leone stunned the home team after just 11 minutes when Jonathan Morsay’s diving header beat goalkeeper Francis Uzoho for the opening goal.

However, Nigeria restored parity five minutes later when Moses Simon set up Alex Iwobi to slot home the equaliser from inside the box.

FC Nantes forward Moses Simon was again the provider for Victor Osimhen to put Nigeria in front four minutes from the break.

It was Osimhen’s 11th international goal in 22 appearances.

It was the Napoli striker who got the first chance at goal as early as the sixth minute, but his powerful header off a Calvin Bassey cross grazed the roof of the net.

Samuel Chukwueze ought to have scored the third goal for Nigeria after he was set up by Osimhen in the 54th minute, but the Villarreal winger scoffed his chance.

In the 59th, substitute Amadou Bakayoko came close to drawing his team level when he sneaked past defender Semi Ajayi only for his effort to crash against the side netting.

In the closing moments of this encounter, the Leone Stars chased the game, but they could not salvage a result.