FA Cup: Ighalo, Mikel, Iheanacho advance to 4th round

January 10
20:05 2016

English football was lit by third round matches of the FA Cup between Friday and Sunday with expected results at some venues and others, shocking outcomes.

For Nigerian players whose clubs were in action, it was a taste of mixed satisfactions – some sat on the bench for full 90 minutes as their team earned the vital wins that would see them in the fourth round ties to be concluded on Monday, January 11.

Chelsea played host to League one side, Scunthorpe FC at the Stamford Bridge on Sunday with Mikel sitting out the whole 90 minutes on the bench.

The Blues were taking part in their second FA Cup campaign under Guus Hiddink who lifted the trophy in 2009.

Mikel alongside captain John Terry and Thibaut Courtois did not see action as Diego Costa’s 13th-minute goal opened up a 2-0 win over the League one strugglers in Chelsea’s 200th FA Cup game.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek came off the bench in the first minute of the second half to increase the lead with Chelsea’s second, thereby landing the seven-time champions in the fourth round as they try for an eighth FA Cup win.

Nigerian sensation, Odion Ighalo came in as a 72-minute sub for Jose Manuel Jurado in Watford’s 1-0 win over Newcastle at Vicarage road on Saturday.

Troy Deeney’s seventh goal of the season in the 44th minute was enough to seal a place in the advanced stage of the FA Cup for Ighalo who was be playing in his first third round of England’s oldest football competition.

Kelechi Iheanacho was on song for Manchester City in the 0-3 demolition of fellow premier league side, Norwich City on Saturday.

The 19-year-old scored City’s second and his fifth of the season 14 minutes after Sergio Aguero opened scoring for the Manuel Pellegrini side.

Belgium international, Kevin de Bruyne completed the route of the Canaries in front of their home crowd in the 78th minute.

Nigeria international, Alex Iwobi was in action for the most of the first half and parts of the second as defending champions, Arsenal survived an early scare from Sunderland at home at the Emirates to finish the game at 3-1.

Dutch international, Jeremain Lens put the visitors in the lead 17 minutes into the game, causing a scare in the Gunners set-up in the first period.

Arsenal came back like a smoking cannon in the second 45 with goals from Joel Campbell, Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud cancelling out Lens’ 17th-minute opener.

In other games played, Nigerian-born Jordon Ibe narrowly escaped defeat with his Liverpool teammates at Football League two side, Exeter City FC, on Friday evening.

Exeter’s Tom Nichols put the home side in the lead after just nine minutes into kick-off before Jerome Sinclair equalised for the Reds three minutes later.

The home side looked poised to book an automatic slot in the fourth round with the 2-1 first-half scoreline through a Lee Holmes goal in 45 minutes but Liverpool again fought back, pushing the decision of who makes the next stage on a replay at Anfield; 21-year-old Brad Smith leveled with a second, 17 minutes before the final whistle.

Dele Alli’s Tottenham also endured a stretching evening in the hands of Leicester City on Sunday at their White Hart lane ground in the 2-2 draw.

The Mauricio Pochettino side gave away a nine minute lead to 35-year-old Marcin Wasilewski leveller for Leicester 10 minutes after the opener.

The Foxes took the lead for the first time through a superb solo run from Japanese international, Shinji Okazaki, two minutes after coming in as a sub.

It was to be the first victory of the year for Leicester boss, Claudio Ranieri with the clock ticking to the last second of the game but for a controversial call by the referee in the last minute of regulation time. gave Spurs the penalty which accurately converted by Harry Kane, gave Spurs another lifeline for a shut in the next stage.

Spurs were awarded a penalty which Harry Kane accurately converted, giving the team another lifeline for a shut in the next stage.


Friday, January 8

Exeter 2-2 Liverpool

Saturday 9th January

Wycombe 1-1 Aston Villa
Arsenal 3-1 Sunderland
Birmingham 1-2 Bournemouth
Brentford 0-1 Walsall Full time
Bury 0-0 Bradford
Colchester 2-1 Charlton
Doncaster 1-2 Stoke
Eastleigh 1-1 Bolton
Everton 2-0 Dag & Red
Hartlepool 1-2 Derby
Huddersfield 2-2 Reading
Hull 1-0 Brighton
Ipswich 2-2 Portsmouth
Leeds 2-0 Rotherham
Middlesbrough 1-2 Burnley
Newport P-P Blackburn
Northampton 2-2 MK Dons
Norwich 0-3 Man City
Nottm Forest 1-0 QPR
Peterborough 2-0 Preston
Sheff Wed 2-1 Fulham
Southampton 1-2 Crystal Palace
Watford 1-0 Newcastle
West Brom 2-2 Bristol City
West Ham 1-0 Wolves
Man Utd 1-0 Sheff Utd

Sunday 10th January 2016

Oxford Utd 3-2 Swansea
Carlisle 2-2 Yeovil
Chelsea 2-0 Scunthorpe
Tottenham 2-2 Leicester


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