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What Kelechi Iheanacho’s Equalizer Against Senegal Means To Nigeria

The Manchester City striker cancelled out Moussa Sow’s opener to ensure Gernot Rohr’s men share the spoils with the Teranga Lions.

An 83rd minute penalty from Kelechi Iheanacho helped Nigeria secure a 1-1 draw against Senegal in their friendly encounter at the Hive Stadium in London.

Moussa Sow had given the Teranga Lions an early second half lead but they could secure victory against the Super Eagles.

The Senegalese started the brighter of both sides in the opening 20 minutes with Idrissa Gueye exerting his influence. And their best chance of the half fell to Sow who rattled the woodwork from close range.

Halfway into the match, Super Eagles skipper for the night, Ogenyi Onazi was stretched off after collision with the Teranga Lions striker, Mame Diouf. The Trabzonspor midfielder was replaced by John Ogu.

And Ogu’s combination with Wilfred Ndidi at the heart of the midfield shifted the momentum to the Rohr’s men.

Nigeria could have gone ahead on two occasions, both opportunities falling to Iheanacho. The Manchester City man fizzled a low shot across the face of the Senegalese goal before missing a point blank effort after some good work from Alex Iwobi and Moses Simon. The first half ended goalless.

After the interval, the Senegalese regained dominance and were rewarded nine minutes into the half after Sow benefitted from poor defending to get the curtain raiser.

Rohr rang the changes with Ogenekaro Etebo and debutant, Isaac Success coming on for Iwobi and Simon respectively.

Etebo almost had an instant impact after an Eagles’ breakaway saw Iheanacho release the Feirense attacker whose effort was parried.

However, the Eagles would have the final say in the match after Iheanacho was tripped in the area by goalkeeper Pape Ndiaye and the youngster made no mistake from 12-yard out to rescue Nigeria from their first loss under Rohr. The strike also marked his fifth in his last six games for the national team.

The Super Eagles will now play their second friendly encounter against Burkina Faso at the same venue on March 27.

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