Posted by Nelson Dafe | 10 January 2016 | 2,580 times
It was a good day for Nigerian young internationals in the third round of the English FA Cup on Saturday. Super Eagles duo, Kelechi Iheanacho of Manchester City and Austin Jay Jay Okocha’s nephew Alex Iwobi of Arsenal, put up scintillating performances for their respective club sides who won their ties.
Iheanacho formed a devastating combination with Sergio Aguero in Manchester City’s attack as they went away and blew Norwich City away 3-0.
Aguero scored the first goal in the early minutes of the match with a superb shot and turned provider for Iheanacho to side-foot the second midway into the first half.
Kevin De Bruyne completed the rout in the 78th minute with a calm finish. It was largely a one-sided affair as City eased past their hosts.
Iheanacho’s overall display seems to be justifying the confidence reposed in him by Coach Manuel Pellegrini, who stunned not a few City fans by refusing to buy an established attacker this season, instead placing his faith on Iheanacho to step up and perform.
Elsewhere in London, Arsenal came from behind to ease to a 3-1 win over visiting Sunderland. Alex Iwobi started as a midfielder and showed good touches to the admiration of the fans.
After some careless defending early in the first half by Laurent Koscielny had gifted Sunderland’s Lens the opener, Iwobi led Arsenal’s response with some energetic running and quick passing play.
He provided the pre-assist for Arsenal’s equaliser as his well-weighed pass was collected by Theo Walcott, who squared for Joel Campbell to slot in.
The Gunners scored their two other goals in the second half with simple tap-ins from substitute Aaron Ramsey and striker Olivier Giroud.
Iwobi received a standing ovation from Arsenal’s fans when he was withdrawn in the second half.
In his post-match interview Arsenal’s manager Arsene Wenger praised Iwobi’s performance.
“Alex Iwobi was one of the guys who was very good in the first half but tired a little bit in the
second,” Wenger said.
“Overall he did well. I liked the timing of his passes and in the middle of the park that’s a vital
quality. He plays forward, sees the pitch and isn’t afraid to take people on. For a young boy that’s not easy,” the manager added.
•Photo shows Iheanacho celebrating a goal for Manchester City.
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