- Paul Onuachu rose highest to nod home the only goal of the encounter between Benin and Nigeria
- The lanky Genk striker was initially on Gernot Rohr’s standby list despite his 27 goals at club level this season
- Onuachu has thanked Nigerians, saying he was pushed to show what he is made of
Super Eagles striker Paul Onuachu has thanked Nigerians following his late strike that sunk the Squirrels of Benin right in their backyard in Porto-Novo.
The Super Eagles of Nigeria have qualified for the AFCON 2021 showpiece in Cameroon as Onuachu headed home a rebound after a goal-mouth scramble to help his side win 1-0 away from home.
Nigerians had blasted Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr for failing to include the Genk striker in the squad despite him scoring 27 goals so far for his club this season.
Many are of the opinion that the tactician insulted the Nigerian striker by putting him on the standby list.
However, following COVID-19 restrictions which put the availability of some players as uncertain, Rohr finally invited Onuachu for the matches, and he responded well scoring the lone goal in Porto-Novo.
"I'm just going to say thanks to the nation for the push. They've really pushed me to show what I have to show in the national team."
Meanwhile, Alex Iwobi has tested positive for coronavirus and will out of final qualifying encounter against Lesotho on Tuesday, March 30.
The Everton of England star returned positive result after Super Eagles players and officials took Covid-19 test on their arrival at Cotonou from Lagos on Friday.
An official statement is yet to be made by the Nigeria Football Federation regarding the latest development and the player’s status.
Legit.ng earlier reported that Comoros made history after qualifying for the 33rd edition of the Africa Cup of Nations staging in Cameroon next year.
The East African country booked its spot in the continental championship earlier this week after playing a 0-0 draw with Kenya at the Stade Omnisports de Malouzini.
As it stands, they are second on the log with nine points after five games - the same as Egypt who are the most successful nation in the history of the tournament with seven titles.
Babajide Orevba is a digital publishing expert, an avid sports content thinker, researcher and writer. He is a graduate of Guidance and Counselling, having bagged his B.SC (ED) from the Ekiti State University. He can be reached on Twitter @JideOrevba