Super Eagles new boy, Paul Onuachu scored world’s second fastest goal in football history yesterday as Nigeria defeated Pharaohs of Egypt 1-0 in an international friendly in Asaba . The victory is first for Nigeria against Egypt at international level since 1990.
The full capacity fans at the Stephen Keshi Stadium were just settling into their seats when the Midtjyland of Denmark front man neatly controlled the pass from John Ogu, weaved past three Egyptian players to riffle home a fierce volley just eight seconds into the Grade A friendly.
Only formerGerman international, Lukas Podoski’s sixth second strike against
Ecuador in an international friendly in 2013 can rival Onuachu’s early goal in just his second game for Nigeria. The gangly lad made his debut for Eagles in last Friday’s last AFCON 2019 qualifier with Seychelles here in Asaba.
Eagles were. clearly the better of the two teams despite the fact the seven-time African champions came to Asaba with a weakened team that was without their talismanic Mohamed Salah.
Gernot Rohr wards took their performance beyond the insipid outing recorded against Seychelles four days ago.
With what looked like a synergy happening between Onuachu, Alex Iwobi, Moses Simon and Henry Onyekuru upfront, the Pharaohs looked ordinary as the Nigerian forward ceaselessly took their defence apart.
Eagles central defence manned by the ‘Oyinbo Wall’ of William Troost Ekong and Leon Balogun also combined well with the full backs of Shehu Abdullahi and another new boy Jamilu Collins. With this Daniel Akpeyi had no problems beyond a few incursion that were not really threats .
Even when the Pharaohs had possession, they struggled to carve out openings as an experimental side failed to prove their worth, producing another lackluster performance following a 1-1 draw at Niger in a dead-rubber Nations Cup qualifier last Saturday which ended the team’s perfect run under new coach Javier Aguirre.
The Mexican, who tasted his first defeat in charge of Egypt, gave debuts to Zamalek keeper Mahmoud Gennesh and central defender Mahmoud Alaa as well as Smouha left-back Ahmed Aboul-Fotouh and Dakhleya winger Islam Gaber.
There were few familiar faces, including winger Mahmoud Trezeguet and Zamalek’s no-nonsense defensive midfielder Tarek Hamed.
The visitors’ forwards were unable to make their presence felt until late in the game when Greek-based winger Amr Warda and striker Ahmed Kouka were introduced.
The first meaningful effort fell to Kouka on 82 minutes when he was released by a through pass but he dithered on the ball to allow his challenger to make a sliding tackle and thwart his attempted shot.
Gaber then created Egypt’s best chance, with his long-range thunderbolt drawing a fine save from Eagles substitute goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa. He also saved the follow up effort.