Nigeria began her 2018 World Cup qualifier with a win, after defeating Zambia 2-1 at the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium, Ndola on Sunday afternoon.
Two first-half strikes Alex Iwobi (32nd minute) and Kelechi Iheanacho (42nd minute), set the Eagles on their way and silenced the excited Ndola crowd, until veteran Mbesuma took advantage of lax defending from the Nigerian defence in the twilight of the game, to get e stadium cheering again.
The hosts began he game with so much flourish, pace and promise, causing the visitors to chase the ball, with Collins Mbesuma and Tembo Fwayo giving the Eagles’ defence a lot to worry about.
The Eagles bidded their, read their opponents and, ever so gradually, possessed the midfield through Ogenyi Onazi and skipper, Obi Mikel.
The Eagles ended the first half on a high, but returned to find themselves on the receiving end, chasing balls and losing them so easily, ith Wilfried Ndidi being the worst culprit, as he let Kalengo Wistene and his replacement, Mwanza Jackson, run amok on his watch.
Nigerian goalie, Karl Ikeme, answered when, in the 38th and 68th minutes, when he denied the Zambians the opportunity to get back in the game, to the chagrin of the home fans.
The Zambians would ha e wishd they had a way of truly going round Troost, but they would have to wait to get the needed points in their next game, while Nigeria would have her confidence buoyed as she waits for Algeria to come calling at home in November in her second qualifier.