There was not much to celebrate for several Nigerian players in the UEFA Champions League on Wednesday, Soccernet.ng reports.
Zaidu Sanusi did not make the matchday squad as Porto fell to a 0-1 defeat against Barcelona at the Estadio do Dragao.
The Super Eagles defender is currently undergoing treatment for a muscle injury, which has ruled him out of Nigeria’s international engagements this month.
In Sanusi’s absence, Barcelona carved out a slender victory thanks to a Ferran Torres strike in first-half stoppage time.
The Spanish La Liga champions were reduced to ten men late on following the dismissal of Gavi, but Porto failed to find a late equaliser.
In the other Group H clash, Royal Antwerp gave up a two-goal lead to crumble to a 2-3 loss at home to Shakhtar Donetsk.
Despite keeping their three Nigerian imports – Alhassan Yusuf, Chidera Ejuke, and George Ilenikhena – on the bench, Antwerp struck twice in the opening 33 minutes to send their fans inside the Bosuil Stadion into dreamland.
But Shakhtar Donetsk silenced the home support in the second half with three goals in 30 minutes.
Yusuf and Ilenikhena came off the bench in the 83rd minute and did well as Antwerp won a penalty in the closing seconds. But Toby Alderweireld’s shot from the penalty spot went wide to deny their Belgian champions their first Champions League point.
Barcelona are top of the group with six points, Porto and Shakhtar Donetsk follow with three points apiece, while Antwerp have none yet.
In Group G, Peter Olayinka played the final 30 minutes of FK Crvena Zvezda’s 2-2 home draw with Young Boys.
Olayinka replaced full-back Milan Rodic with FK Crvena Zvezda trailing 1-2, but Osman Bukari netted with two minutes left on the clock to earn the Serbian giants a share of the spoils.
In Group F, Samuel Chukwueze was introduced to the pitch in the 69th minute of AC Milan’s goalless draw away to Borussia Dortmund.
Newcastle United’s excellent 4-1 win over PSG in the other group match sends the Premier League side to the top of the table with four points. Milan only have two points after two games and are a point behind PSG and one ahead of Dortmund.
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