Hull City

International Round-Up: Debut Delight For Aina

08 October 2017
Ola Aina enjoyed an international debut to remember on Saturday as he helped Nigeria became the first African side to secure qualification for Russia 2018.

The on-loan full-back came on as 79th-minute substitute to make his senior bow in the Super Eagles’ clash with Zambia, which finished 1-0. The win put them on an unassailable 13 points at the top of Group B.

Kamil Grosicki will also be hoping to star on the biggest stage after he helped Poland to qualify as winners of Group E. Scoring in their 4-2 home win over Montenegro, Grosicki and his side secured a direct ticket to Russia.

Nouha Dicko, meanwhile, was an unused sub as Mali were held to a goalless draw at home by Ivory Coast in their World Cup qualifier.

Allan McGregor’s Scotland side suffered disappointment on Sunday evening as they missed out on a play-off place following a 2-2 draw away to Slovenia. The custodian had a watching brief of the action as he was an unused substitute for Gordon Strachan’s side.

Markus Henriksen was again involved for Norway on Saturday as they ended their World Cup qualifying campaign with a 1-0 victory over Northern Ireland. The attacking midfielder was included in Lars Lagerbäck’s starting line-up and played 83 minutes before being replaced.

Three more members of Leonid Slutsky’s squad could be in action over the next two days.

David Meyler skippered Ireland to a 2-0 home win over Moldova on Friday night to set up a crucial final qualifying fixture with Wales this evening.

Three points this evening would see Martin O’Neill’s side claim at least a play-off spot, although automatic qualification is still a possibility should current group leaders Serbia lose at home to Georgia.

Seb Larsson won his 93rd international cap for Sweden when helping them to an 8-0 win over Luxembourg on Saturday, and the experienced midfielder will be hoping to see his country secure automatic qualification on Tuesday night when they travel to Amsterdam to face Holland.

Sweden are currently second in Group A and avoiding a six-goal defeat would see them clinch a place in next month’s play-offs. A win, however, could yet see them qualify for Russia automatically if France failed to beat Belarus at home.

Fikayo Tomori was an unused substitute as Aidy Boothroyd’s England Under-21 side claimed a 3-1 win over Scotland on Friday night, and will be hoping to get some international minutes under his belt when the young Three Lions face Andorra tomorrow evening.

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