At the World Cup in 1994 a good number of Chelsea travelled to the USA despite England’s failure to qualify. They went to watch a Chelsea player at the World Cup. The spectacle of one of our employees playing on the biggest stage was so rare and unusual. Few of those loyal souls could have imagined a day when we could have three Chelsea players in one tournament let alone in one squad.
Dmitri Kharine’s Russia failed to get out of the group in ’94 and this Nigeria side might follow that lead after they failed to beat a woefully limited Iran. Their next two matches are now a must win game against Bosnia Herzagovina and Argentina.
John Obi Mikel, Kenneth Omeruo and Victor Moses all started but young Omeruo had so little to do in defence it was hardly worth him playing. Victor Moses rarely had the ball after the opening exchanges as Nigeria’s quick, exciting front three failed to gel.
Iran managed one shot at the Nigeria goal as Reza Ghoochannejad forced a save from Vincent Enyeama. That was it.
Nigeria fashioned a few half chances in the first period. But the Super Eagles failed to break down an Iran side who needed only to be well organized. Obi John played balls square, hopelessly long or square or hopelessly square all afternoon and to be honest we fell asleep watching.
Iran will go home with this point but have no further impact. Nigeria might still make it through but will have to beat Bosnia and get a result from Argentina – stranger things have happened.