Nigeria can continue their 100 per cent record in qualification for the 2022 African Cup of Nations when they host Sierra Leone on Friday. The Super Eagles lead Group L with two wins from two and start as firm favourites for another at Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin City.
Gernot Rohr's side started the qualification campaign with back-to-back victories over Benin Republic and Lesotho in November last year to sit top of Group L.
Nigeria came from a goal down to beat Benin with Napoli striker Victor Osimhen and Bordeaux midfielder Samuel Kalu sealing a 2-1 victory at the Akwa Ibom Stadium in Uyo.
The Super Eagles also conceded first in a 4-2 win over Lesotho at Setsoto Stadium in Maseru. Everton's Alex Iwobi and Villarreal's Samuel Chukwueze put Nigeria ahead before Osimhen struck twice in the second half.
Since then, Nigeria have played just two friendlies in the last 12 months. They lost 1-0 to Algeria in October and followed that with a 1-1 draw with Tunisia with Kelechi Iheanacho getting the goal.
Nigeria Team News
Midtjylland midfielder Frank Onyeka will miss both games against Sierra Leone due to injury. Omonia Nicosia's Shehu Abdullahi takes his place in the squad.
Nantes winger Moses Simon and Leganes defender Kenneth Omeruo have also been ruled out through injuries.
Goalkeepers: Daniel Akpeyi, Maduka Okoye, Sebastian Osigwe
Defenders: William Troost-Ekong, Leon Balogun, Chidozie Awaziem, Ola Aina, Jamilu Collins, Semi Ajayi, Tyronne Ebuehi, Kevin Akpoguma, Zaidu Sanusi
Midfielders: Peter Etebo, Samuel Chukwueze, Joe Aribo, Shehu Abdullahi, Alex Iwobi
Forwards: Ahmed Musa, Kelechi Ịheanachọ, Victor Osimhen, Paul Onuachu, Emmanuel Dennis, Chidera Ejuke
Sierra Leone Form
Sierra Leone have one point from their opening two qualifiers and are bottom of Group L heading into the daunting double header against Nigeria.
John Keister's side looked to have started their campaign with a win over Lesotho thanks to Kwame Quee's 70th minute goal. But they conceded a last minute equaliser as substitute Jane Thabantso levelled for a 1-1 draw at the National Stadium in Freetown.
Sierra Leone slipped to a disappointing 1-0 defeat at Benin days later in November last year with Jodel Dossou's first-half goal proving to be the difference between the sides at the Stade Charles de Gaulle in Porto-Novo.
Sierra Leone also lost two friendlies played in October this year. They went down 2-1 to Mauritania despite a goal from Crespo, and lost 1-0 to Niger.
Sierra Leone Team News
Striker Kei Kamara returns from international retirement with the Minnesota United called up by John Keister. He is joined by fellow MLS star Augustine Williams with the LA Galaxy striker set for his international debut.
Captain Umaru Bangura is unavailable for the game, but the FC Zurich defender should be free to play in the return fixture in Freetown next week.
Sierra Leone Squad
Goalkeepers: Mohamed Kamara, Unisa Conteh, Abubakarr Toma
Defenders: Umaru Bangura (unavailable for first game), Alie Sesay, Osman Kakay, Kevin Wright, Abu Bakarr Samura, Yeami Dunia, Mustapha Dumbuya, Ishmael Koroma
Midfielders: John Kamara, Sorie Barrie, Alimamy Bundu, Abu Dumbuya, Sallieu Tarawallie, Hassan Koroma, Julius Goba, Mohamed Medo Kamara, Rodney Strasser, George Davies, Kwame Quee
Forwards: Prince Barrie, Musa Kamara, Crespo, Augustine Williams, Mustapha Bundu, Kei Kamara, Mohamed Buya Turay, Alhaji Kamara
Nigeria vs Sierra Leone Head to Head
Nigeria have won the last four matches against Sierra Leone, and six of the last seven head to heads. Two goals inside the last five minutes from Osas Okoro and Eneji Moses sealed a 2-0 win for Nigeria in the last meeting in the WAFU Cup of Nations in 2017.
Nigeria vs Sierra Leone Odds
Nigeria will start the game as heavy favourites to claim a win and move a step closer to a place in the African Cup of Nations Finals in Cameroon in 2022.
Nigeria vs Sierra Leone Stats
- Nigeria have won their last 3 competitive internationals (all competitions).
- Nigeria's Victor Osimhen is the top scorer in the African Cup of Nations qualifying with 3 goals.
- Nigeria have won their last 4 matches against Sierra Leone (all competitions).
- Sierra Leone have lost 4 of their last 5 matches (all competitions).
- Sierra Leone have lost their last 10 away matches (all competitions).
- Sierra Leone have failed to score in 7 of their last 10 away matches (all competitions).