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Nigerian players clash in Europe

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In the French Ligue 1, Moses Simon’s FC Nantes will be eager to hand Terem Moffi and OGC Nice their first defeat of the French topflight campaign when the two sides at Stade de la Beaujoire.

Moffi scored his team-leading fourth goal of the season in the victory over Toulouse and has also provided two assists in 13 league matches as second-placed Nice look to challenge PSG for the title.

Moffi had a goal and an assist in their last visit to Nice last season, scoring five minutes into that contest before setting up the other goal by Youssouf Ndayishimiye in the 71st minute.

Winger, Simon, has also been in a rich vein of form with three goals and five assists to his name in 13 appearances in the Ligue 1 although he is currently going through a dry spell with no contributions in the last three games.

Jocelyn Gourvennec begins his tenure as Nantes coach this weekend under challenging circumstances, with this team currently winless in four consecutive league fixtures.

Gourvennec inherits a side that have been indecisive in the attacking third of late, failing to find the back of the net in three of their previous four outings.

Nine of Nantes’ 15 points in Ligue 1 this season have come at home where they have only conceded once in their previous three domestic affairs.

Les Canaris have triumphed in just one of their previous seven encounters against Nice across all competitions, with that victory coming in the final of the 2021/22 Coupe de France as Simon bagged his first trophy in France.

Coming off the back of consecutive victories, West Bromwich Albion will give their promotion credentials the ultimate test when they welcome Leicester City to The Hawthorns as Ajayi locks horns with Foxes duo Ndidi and Iheanacho.

West Brom made it five wins from their last six matches in the Championship with a 1-0 victory over the Cardiff City Stadium against Erol Bulut’s Bluebirds on Tuesday night, with Brighton & Hove Albion loanee Jeremy Sarmiento providing the only moment of quality in the contest, curling in a sensational long-range effort.

The Baggies are unbeaten in their last six matches at The Hawthorns conceding just once over that period and have collected 20 points from nine home contests.

Leicester’s start to this second-tier term had been heralded as one of the best in the division’s history up until recently, but the East Midlands outfit have now won just one of their last four league matches, although Enzo Maresca’s men still hold an eight-point lead over third-placed Leeds.

Ndidi and Iheanacho have been pivotal to Leicester’s run to the top of the league with 10 goal contribution between the both of them, Iheanacho has scored five goals and provide one assist, Ndidi has scored one goal and provided three assists.

Ajayi on the other hand has notched two goals and made one assist in 11 matches in the Championship.

The last three meetings between the two clubs were in the Premier League, with the Foxes winning the most recent matchup 3-0 in April 2021 thanks to goals from Vardy, Kelechi Iheanacho and Jonny Evans.

Nigerian midfielder Joe Aribo and defender Jamilu Collins will battle it out in the third game as Southampton look to extend their undefeated run against Cardiff City at the St. Mary’s stadium.

At a time when the Saints are sitting in fourth position in the Championship standings, Cardiff have recently dropped down to ninth spot.

Southampton’s goalscoring exploits have started to drop off with just five strikes in four games yet the considerable improvement in defence means that it has not cost them.

Four wins and one draw have come from their most recent five matches at St Mary’s, but their only shutout during that period was the one against the Robins on Wednesday.

Aribo is yet to score or provide an assist in 12 appearances in the Championship this season but remains a regular in the team sheet, while Collins has been a creative force for Cardiff providing three assists in 15 games.

With 27 points from 18 matches, everyone associated with Cardiff can be more than satisfied with their season under Erol Bulut at this stage.

Seven points have been collected from fixtures at Huddersfield Town, Stoke City and Preston North End, the fact that they have conceded just once during that triple-header enough for Southampton to take note.

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