It was another actioned packed weekend in the football world which seemed to be going the way of the big teams until Girona struck. Izuchukwu Akawor picks out five things that stood out for him.
1. Anthony Nwakaeme is ready to make his Super Eagles debut
With Super Eagles manager, Gernot Rohr, set to once again test the quality of depth at his disposal against Algeria next month, Hapoel Beer Sheva forward, Nwakaeme underlined his readiness to lead the lines by scoring a brace for his club.
The 28-year-old, who was voted the best player in the Israeli league last term, has been invited to the Super Eagles a few times but is yet to make his debut.
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However, having taken his season’s tally to three goals in six league games this season, Nwakaeme is expected to be named in Rohr’s squad for the games next month.
While Algeria’s match is of little significance, it would offer Nwakaeme the perfect opportunity to show his national team coach and Nigerians that he has what it takes to battle first choice forward, Odion Ighalo, who is also in very solid form in the Chinese League.
2. Chidozie Awaziem and Kenneth Omeruo are in great shape
Another weekend, another good performance from this duo. While Awaziem and Nantes lost for the first time in a long while, Omeruo’s Kasimpasa earned a first league win in five games.
These two have been constant features for their clubs, with Awaziem seeing another ninety minutes of action, his sixth of the season, while Omeruo also featured from start to finish for the fifth time in six league games.
It was a quiet day for Awaziem and his side in the Ligue 1, but Omeruo was one of the better rated players in Kasimpasa’s win, after a performance that saw him win three headed duels, two tackles, and he also showed a calmness on the ball as he was very neat with his passes.
Mix jollof @omeruo22 @ememeduok21 pic.twitter.com/yePfq8106T
— Bernard Mensah (@oliver_mens) October 28, 2017
With the need for a solid backup to the ‘Oyibo Wall’, the form of these two young players especially 2013 AFCON winner, Omeruo, is very important, as Rohr continues his search for a worthy option for defence leader, Leon Balogun.
3. Shehu Dikko continues to wax stronger
LMC chairman, and the second vice President of the Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, Shehu Dikko, has added another feather to his already heavy cap after he was named as a member of FIFA’s Football Stakeholders’ Council.
His appointment to the body was ratified by the world football governing body, FIFA, at the weekend in Calcutta, India.
.@PinnickAmaju congratulates @ShehuDikko on FIFA appointment…https://t.co/dU1xu0e99G #ShehuDikko pic.twitter.com/VcpMuCNGYr
— The NFF 🇳🇬 (@thenff) October 27, 2017
The ratification sees Dikko become the third Nigerian named by FIFA into its committees this year.
We at ACLSports.com have no doubt that Dikko, who has done brilliantly well in his capacity as chairman of the LMC, which oversees the management of the Nigerian Professional Football League, NPFL, will be wonderful representative of our country, Nigeria.
We wish Mr Dikko all the best and believe that whatever new knowledge he gets will be used to further develop football in the country.
4. Bayern Munich go three points clear in the Bundesliga
There are certain habits that are very difficult to change, and one of them is Bayern Munich’s dominance of the German League.
Bayern were five points behind rivals, Borussia Dortmund, and sacked then manager, Carlo Ancelotti with former manager, Jupp Heynckes replacing him earlier this month.
Back where we belong 😊
Everyone enjoy their weekend?
🔝🔝🔝🔴⚪️ #MiaSanMia pic.twitter.com/e8PmUBLjqG
— FC Bayern Munich (@FCBayernEN) October 30, 2017
However, five matches later, the 72-year-old is up to his old tricks again as he’s not only re-energised the defending champions, but taken them top of the Bundesliga.
The latest win is a 2-0 home win over RB Leipzig at the Allianz Arena, which took the Bavarians three points clear of Dortmund, who were shocked 4-2 by Hannover 96. Five games, five wins, twelve goals scored and just one conceded, can the treble winner repeat his 2012/13 record-breaking season on his return? Well, only time will tell.
5. Olarenwaju Kayode’s Girona shock Real Madrid
Last weekend, it was Huddersfield who provided us with the shock 2-1 defeat of PL giants, Manchester United. This week, another promoted side, this time in the Spanish League, La Liga, Girona, has given us another shock result with similar score line.
The La Liga newcomers, who have a link with PL side, Manchester City, shocked European champions, Real Madrid 2-1 at the Estadio Municipal de Montilivi.
Amid political quagmire in Spain, which has threatened the democratic settings in the country, Real Madrid’s first visit to the Catalan side ended in an embarrassing manner.
Són festes a Girona! 😍#OrgullGironí ⚪️🔴 #HISTÒR1A pic.twitter.com/BzMaKsVqqo
— Girona FC (@GironaFC) October 29, 2017
Isco had given the away side the lead, but two goals from Christian Stuani and Portu handed the modest side a shocking win over their more illustrious opponents, Real, who last lost to a promoted side in 1990.
Girona’s defeat left the Los Blancos third on the log, eight points behind rivals Barcelona, who are top of the league standings, while Valencia occupy second spot.
These were what I picked out from the weekend, but I’d love to know what your weekend highlight was. So, Let us know in the comment section.