Super Eagles Held to 1-1 Draw by Zimbabwe; Coach Peseiro Cites Fatigue and Key Absences

by Hashim
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In a matchday-two showdown of the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers, the Super Eagles of Nigeria faced a setback, settling for a 1-1 draw against Zimbabwe, MySportDab Reports.

Head coach Jose Peseiro attributed the lackluster performance to fatigue, pointing out the demanding journey from Uyo to Rwanda and the subsequent bus ride and flight, leaving the players with insufficient rest to meet the expected level of play at the Huye Stadium.

Despite Walter Musonda’s spectacular 30-yard free-kick propelling Zimbabwe into an early lead, Kelechi Iheanacho’s equalizer salvaged a point for Nigeria, denying the Warriors their first victory over the Eagles in 42 years.

Peseiro acknowledged the team’s subpar first half but noted improvement in the second, citing the squad’s depleted energy levels as a hindrance to securing a win.

Peseiro highlighted the absence of key players, including Osimhen, Ndidi, Taiwo, Zaidu, and Chukwueze, contributing to the team’s challenges. Despite the notable players missing, Peseiro expressed confidence that the squad possessed enough talent to overcome Zimbabwe, stating, “We missed some key players, but I think we had enough to beat Zimbabwe.”

Currently occupying the second spot in Group C with two points, the Super Eagles find themselves trailing behind South Africa. The latter could extend their lead to four points if they secure a victory against Rwanda on Tuesday.

The 1-1 draw serves as a reminder of the hurdles faced by the Nigerian squad, emphasizing the impact of fatigue and player absences on their quest for World Cup qualification. As the team regroups, attention now turns to addressing these challenges and preparing for the upcoming fixtures in the qualifying series.

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