MX23RW : Tuesday, January 25 02:20:36| >> :600:214686:214686:
Jan 15, 2022 at 4pm UK
NigeriaNigeria
3-1
SudanSudan
Chukwueze (3'), Awoniyi (45'), Simon (46')
Aina (69')
FT(HT: 2-0)
Khidir Safour Daiyeen (70' pen.)

Preview: Nigeria vs. Sudan - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Africa Cup of Nations clash between Nigeria and Sudan, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Fresh off the back of a hard-earned victory over fellow group favourites Egypt, Nigeria take on Sudan at the Roumde Adjia Stadium in Group D of the Africa Cup of Nations on Saturday.

While victory for the Super Eagles will almost certainly secure their spot in the knockout stages, the Falcons of Jediane will look to avoid more dropped points after playing out a bore draw with Guinea-Bissau on Tuesday.


Match preview

Nigeria's Odion Ighalo celebrates scoring their first goal with team mates on July 6, 2019© Reuters

Nigeria got their Africa Cup of Nations campaign off to a fine start as they claimed a 1-0 victory over Egypt in their Group D curtain-raiser on Tuesday.

In a game where Mohamed Salah was shut out by the Super Eagles' rigid defence, it was Leicester City man Kelechi Iheanacho who stole the headlines as he scored the only goal of the game on the half-hour mark.

Nigeria, who are seeking their fourth title on the continental stage, are now unbeaten in all but one of their last seven games in all competitions, claiming five wins and one draw in that time.

This impressive run also saw Augustine Eguavoen's men secure smooth passage into the playoffs of the 2022 World Cup after finishing top of Group C in the qualifiers, two points ahead of runners-up Cape Verde.

Following their opening-day win over the Pharaohs, Nigeria currently sit at the summit of Group D and will look to keep the juggernaut rolling as they aim to surpass their third-placed finish in Egypt three years ago.

Kenneth Omeruo in action for Nigeria at the World Cup on June 26, 2018© Reuters

Meanwhile, Sudan will be somewhat delighted by their start to the tournament as they held Guinea-Bissau to a goalless draw at the Roumde Adjia Stadium on Tuesday.

In a game where clear-cut chances were at a premium, Guinea-Bissau were given a glorious opportunity to take the lead in the 82nd minute after winning a penalty, but goalkeeper Ali Abdullah Abou did brilliantly to deny Monaco midfielder Pele.

While manager Burhan Tia will be impressed by the result, the 57-year-old will be concerned with his side's lack of firepower up top as they have now failed to score in six consecutive games since October's 2-2 draw with Guinea.

Sudan head into Saturday's game on an 11-game winless streak, losing seven and claiming four draws, and this poor string of results saw them miss out on a place in the playoffs of the World Cup and also crash out of the Arab Cup in the group stages back in December.

While they will look to find their feet and get their AFCON campaign up and running, standing in their way is an opposing side who they have lost to in each of their last two encounters since a 1-0 victory back in 2014.

Nigeria Africa Cup of Nations form:
  • W

Nigeria form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W
  • D
  • W

Sudan Africa Cup of Nations form:
  • D

Sudan form (all competitions):
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • L
  • L
  • D


Team News

Nigeria's Ahmed Musa celebrates scoring their second goal against Iceland on June 22, 2018© Reuters

Nigeria will have to make do without the services of former Chelsea defender Kenneth Omeruo, who was stretchered off the pitch through a 79th-minute injury against Egypt last time out.

His replacement Semi Ajayi, who turns out for West Bromwich Albion in the Championship, should come into the XI and team up with William Troost-Ekong at the heart of the defence.

Following his winner against the Pharaohs, Iheanacho has now had four goal involvements for club and country and we expect the Leicester City man to spearhead the attack with 24-year-old Taiwo Awoniyi.

Rangers man Joe Aribo caught the eye as he turned on the style at the centre of the park and we expect the 25-year-old to retain his spot in the Super Eagles' midfield pivot, alongside Leicester City's Wilfred Ndidi.

Meanwhile, following Tuesday's goalless draw with Guinea-Bissau, Sudan have now failed to find the target in any of their last six games since putting two past Guinea back in October and we expect Tia to make some changes in attack.

Al-Gozoli Nooh will be one of few pushing for a starting role and the Al-Merrikh forward could come in for Yasin Hamed, who struggled to make his mark last time out before coming off in the 66th minute.

In defence, we expect to see the same back four of Mustafa Elfadni, Salaheldin Nemer, Mustafa Karshoum and Mazin Mohamedein, shielding Abou, who made a sensational 82nd-minute penalty save to deny Pele against the Djurtus.

Nigeria possible starting lineup:
Okoye; Aina, Troost-Ekong, Ajayi, Sanusi; Aribo, Ndidi; Chukweze, Iheanacho, Simon; Awoniyi

Sudan possible starting lineup:
Abou; Elfadni, Nemer, Karshoum, Mohamedein; G Omer, Khidir, Al-Rasheed, A Omer; Nooh, Abdelrahman


SM words green background

We say: Nigeria 2-0 Sudan

Nigeria stuck to the gameplan and secured a vital win against Egypt, who should be their most difficult opponent in the group stages. They will be boosted by that performance and we predict they will carry on that momentum into Saturday's game and claim all three points against a floundering Sudan side.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data


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How you voted: Nigeria vs Sudan

Nigeria
92.5%
Draw
5.7%
Sudan
1.9%
53
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Rangers' Joe Aribo in action, November 25, 2021
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3Chelsea24138348183047
4Manchester UnitedMan Utd2211563630638
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9Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2261242323030
10Leicester CityLeicester207583437-326
11Aston Villa2182112832-426
12Southampton2251072634-825
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14Brentford2365122638-1223
15Leeds UnitedLeeds215792440-1622
16Everton2054112435-1119
17Norwich CityNorwich2244141345-3216
18Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2129102143-2215
19Watford2042142340-1714
20Burnley181981627-1112

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