Damilola Aina, Abuja
Daily Courier – Victor Osimhen scored his first international hat-trick and created two goals as Nigeria brushed off their Matchday 2 opponents, Sao Tome & Principe in the African Cup of Nations, AFCON, qualifiers to sit in a commanding position in Group A with an expected win.
Although Nigeria winning would not come as a shock, the surprise was the goal margin, as they put a record-equalling (10) goals past The Falcons. The only time the Super Eagles have gone into double figures was a 10-1 victory over now Benin Republic more than six decades ago.
With the calibre of players on parade in the Super Eagles squad against a lowly rated Sao Tome & Principe, it was only going to be a matter of how many goals Nigeria would score.
Victor Osimhen grabbed his first senior hat-trick and one more, Ademola Lookman and Terem Moffi got their first Super Eagles goal and it was simply a stroll in the park for Jose Peseiro’s men.
The Napoli hitman well known for being prolific in the air got his first two via headers. Moses Simon and Terem Moffi added to Osimhen’s first goal to end the first half three goals up – a score-line that all but settled the tie.
If the Super Eagles were imperious in the first half, the second turned out to be an annihilation. Seven goals killed whatever fighting spirit the island nation had left in them and now require nothing short of a miracle to qualify for their first continental competition.
Oghenekaro scored a spectacular free-kick and Emmanuel Dennis scored from the spot dip in stoppage time to get in on the act.
Osimhen now leads the AFCON qualifiers goal-scoring chart with five (5) goals with just two games in. The next matchday is in September against Guinea Bissau.