Nigeria vs Zambia: All you need to know
– Nigeria has defeated Zambia 8 times
– Zambia has defeated Nigeria 5 times
– Both teams have drawn 6 times
– Nigeria has scored 10 goals and conceded 3 goals in the Russia 2018 World Cup qualifiers
– 6 players have scored for Nigeria – Iwobi, Iheanacho, Ighalo, Mikel, Victor Moses and Moses Simon
– Victor Moses leads the goals chart with 3 goals, 2 against Algeria and one in the 4-0 defeat of Cameroon. Mikel Obi follows with 2 goals, one each against Algeria and Cameroon.
– Zambia has scored 6 goals and conceded 3 goals in the qualifiers
– Nigeria has 10 points, Zambia has 7 points
– Should Nigeria win against Zambia in Uyo on Saturday, October 7, Nigeria would be the early countries in the world to qualify for the 2018 World Cup
– Should Nigeria draw, it will be at 11 points while Zambia will be at 8. The ticket will thereby be decided on the last match day of the series when Nigeria go away to Algeria and Zambia host Cameroon
– Should both teams end on even points, the decider would be by goals difference.
POSSIBLE STARTING LINE UP
Nigeria: Ezenwa, Shehu, Troost-Ekong, Balogun, Echiejile, Onazi, Ndidi, Mikel, Moses, Simon, Ighalo.
Zambia: Mweene, Sunzu, Tembo, Kapumbu, Silwimba, Mtonga, Mwepu, Mulenga, Mbewe, Shonga, Daka.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Victor Moses, Mikel Obi, Ighalo, Moses Simon, Kelechi Iheanacho, Alex Iwobi, William Troost-Ekong, Leon Balogun
– Kennedy Mweene: Experience goalkeeper, won 2012 Nations Cup, 111 caps for Zambia, produced crucial saves in Zambia win away to Algeria. Saved Riyad Marhez penalty in Zambia 1-0 defeat of Algeria in Constatine
– Patson Dhaka: Plays for FC Liefering forward, scored the lone winning goal away to Algeria. Sneaky with ability to silently step behind defence line. Joined team from Zambia U-20 and debuted against Algeria in Lusaka.
– Stopilla Sunzu: Defender marshal with 65 caps for Chipolopolo, plays for Arsenal Tula FC in Russia
– Ernest Mbewe: Midfielder, plays for Zanaco FC, young energetic and hardworking, he effectively checked Marhez in Constantine.
– Others to watch include Jacob Mulenga, Edward Chilfya nicknamed the “Hurricane of Ntofotofo
OUT OF ACTION
Brian Mwila: Striker, plays for Platinum Stars F.C. Zambia, has scored 7 goals in 8 appearances since joining Chipolopolo 5 months ago, scored two against Algeria in Lusaka.
Mwila is reportedly down with injury and did not feature away to Algeria. He might be unavailable against Nigeria in Uyo.
Brian Mwila stamped his authority in the the Chipoloplo team since he made his debut in June this year. The Platinum Stars F.C youngster has so far bagged seven goals in his first eight games for Zambia.
Collins Mbesuma – Scored in Zambia 1-2 lose to Nigeria in Ndola but has not enjoyed much confidence from Coach Nyirenda
Rainford Kalaba and Nathan Sinkala: Old timers and poster boy of Chipolopolo but not featuring in Nyirenda’s new team