Iheanacho goal gave Super Eagle victory over Egypt
Leicester City forward Kelechi Iheanacho scored as Nigeria put a worried figure-up to the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon behind them on Tuesday to beat Egypt 1-0 in Garoua.
Iheanacho struck after 30 twinkles to take the Super Eagles to the top of the table after the opening match in Group D, which includes Guinea-Bissau and Sudan.
Nigeria fired German trainer Gernot Rohr in December after an miserable World Cup qualifying crusade and put former public star Augustine Eguavoen in temporary charge.
Eguavoen’s team was without forwards Victor Osimhen, Emmanuel Dennis and Odion Ighalo for a variety of reasons, but his platoon did him proud against Mohamed Salah- captained Egypt.
Fat Liverpool scorer Salah hardly touched the ball and had only one chance, late in the alternate half, to equalise.
A cagey opening half controlled by Nigeria sprang to life on 26 twinkles when winger Moses Simon got behind the Egypt defence and fired into the side netting from a delicate angle.
Simon played a major part when the Super Eagles took the supereminent four twinkles latterly at the- capacity Stade Roumde Adjia in the northwestern megacity of Garoua.
His cross was only incompletely cleared by Ahmed Hegazy and Nigerian Joseph Aribo jounced the ball into the path of Iheanacho who pounded a half- blitz history goalkeeper Mohamed Elshenawy.
A far more energetic Nigerian side merited to be in front against sleepy opponents with Salah starved of possession in 30 degrees celsius (86 fahrenheit) heat.
Iheanacho nearly set up a alternate thing for Nigeria before half- time, but his pass to Taiwo Awoniyi was just too strong and Elshenawy dashed off his line to gather the ball.
Egypt nearly fell further behind a couple of twinkles into the alternate half when Elshenawy got his hands to an Awoniyi title and the ball came back into play off the underpart of the bar.
Simon’s speed was a constant trouble on the leftism, while Nigeria goalkeeper Maduka Okoye was a bare onlooker with Egypt unfit to mount pressure.
Salah, sporting a shorter hair style, eventually got a scoring chance as the match entered the final quarter, but his close- range prod was blocked by Okoye’s bottom and cleared.
Meanwhile, in the first of three matches on Tuesday, defending titleholders Algeria were unexpectedly held to a 0-0 Group E draw by minnows Sierra Leone in the Atlantic harborage megacity of Douala.
Yacine Brahimi missed the holders’ stylish chance beforehand in the alternate half when he plant himself with just the goalkeeper to beat, only for Mohamed Kamara to hold his shot at the alternate attempt.
The third day of group institutions will be completed when Guinea-Bissau face Sudan in a clash of Group D outlanders in Garoua at 2000 original time (1900 GMT).