The Super Eagles lost 1-0 to reigning African champions Algeria in Friday’s international friendly in Austria.
It is now 19-game unbeaten for the Algerians who have also now beaten the Eagles in their last three meetings.
Following the outcome of Friday’s game, Completesports.com takes a look at five observations on the part of the Eagles….
– Maduka Okoye had a decent performance in first Super Eagles start
The Sparta Rotterdam goalkeeper had the chance to make his first start for the Super Eagles and put up a decent display.
Could not be faulted for the goal as his defenders failed to react to a rebound from a corner.
Pulled off a brilliant save to parry a dangerous free-kick by Algeria’s Andy Delort on 36 minutes.
Was called into action again with five minutes left in the game as he tipped away to safety a dangerous cross from Yacine Brahimi.
Okoye’s decent performance has no doubt made life more difficult for Gernot Rohr in the goalkeeping position.
–Wilfred Ndidi, Oghenekaro Etebo, Joe Aribo Hugely missed in midfield
The absence of the trio of Wilfred Ndidi, Oghenekaro Etebo, Joe Aribo was felt as the Super Eagles midfield was non existent.
The Algerians controlled the midfield well which caused the Eagles, most especially the defence and attack problems.
Semi Ajayi, Frank Onyeka and Mikel Agu all struggled to make any meaningful impact as the Algerians continued to create problems for the backline due lack of protection.
–Zaidu Sanusi showed promise
If what FC Porto left-back Zaidu Sanusi showed in just his debut for the Eagles is anything to go by, then Jamilu Collins has a big fight on his hands.
After struggling initially trying to stop one of the deadliest wingers in world football, Riyad Mahrez, Sanusi gradually got into the game and impressed.
He created the Eagles first real chance when he sent in a dangerous cross which Paul Onuachu failed to put away.
He went close again after he made a brilliant run from behind but his low cross from a tight angle was stopped by the Algerian keeper.
–Paul Onuachu again failed to justify Super Eagles call-up
Time seems to be running out for Paul Onuachu as he once again failed to make an impact.
The tall striker had the chance to impress in the absence of Victor Osimhen but failed to leave his mark in the game.
His only opportunity in the game came in the first half when he connected with Sanusi’s cross which took a touch on the Algerian keeper and rolled away for a corner.
Aside that he laboured to get into decent positions and did not really trouble the opposition defence as he was well taken care of.
–Struggle to impress against a well organised opposition
Just like what happened at last year’s AFCON, the Algerians once again showed that against a formidable opposition the Eagles will struggle.
Gernot Rohr side could not string passes together, failed to create enough scoring opportunities and produced a flat performance.
Despite the introduction of Kelechi Iheanacho, Ahmed Musa and Moses Simon, they still could not trouble the Algerian defence.
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