Nigeria got their 2019 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying campaign back on track as they eased to a 3-0 away win over the Seychelles at Stade Linite in Victoria on Saturday afternoon.
The victory sees the Super Eagles rack up their first three points in Group E, while the Pirates remain bottom of the standings after a second successive defeat.
Nigeria dominated from the kick-off and claimed the lead in the 15th minute. Ahmed Musa sent a left-footed volley toward goal, with the ball rebounding off the underside of the crossbar before bouncing in off the body of Seychelles goalkeeper Dave Mussard.
The Super Eagles doubled their advantage on 34 minutes, with Chidozie Awaziem steering a shot into an empty net after Kelechi Iheanacho’s initial effort direct from a free kick rebounded off the upright and left Mussard with no chance to recover.
Nigerian striker Odion Ighalo nearly added a third just two minutes later when he sprung the offside trap and lobbed the goalkeeper, only to see his effort hit the top of the crossbar and bounce back into play.
Yet the Chinese-based forward waited only 12 minutes into the second half to put his name on the score sheet, converting a penalty which was won by Samuel Kalu to put the Super Eagles three goals to the good.
Seychelles had only one real chance to pull a goal back, with a long punt catching the Nigerian defence square and allowing Perry Monnaie to run onto the ball, but he sent his effort wide of the target in the 63rd minute.
The teams will return to Afcon qualifying action in a month’s time, with Nigeria at home to Libya and the Seychelles away to South Africa.
Nigeria (2) 3 (Musa/Mussard og 15’, Awaziem 34’, Ighalo 57’ pen)
Seychelles: Mussard, Joubert, B. Esther, Marie, Nancy, Mellie, Carl, C. Esther (Sinon 87’), Pamod, Laurence (Bibi 60’), Monnaie (Tamboo 83’)
Nigeria: Uzoho, Omeruo, Balogun, Awaziem (Ajayi 74’), Idowu, Onazi, Ndidi, Iheanacho (Etebo 64’), Musa, Kalu (Onyekuru 85’), Ighalo