Yobo provides Nigeria luck
Lucky Nigeria snatched a dramatic 1-0 away win over Sierra Leone this weekend to maintain a perfect record in the 2010 World Cup-African Nations Cup qualifiers.
The woodwork rescued the 'Super Eagles' twice in Freetown before Everton defender Joseph Yobo grabbed the 89th-minute winner by poking the ball into the net after a goalmouth melee.
Nigeria began their Group 4 programme by outclassing South Africa 2-0 in Abuja last Sunday and appear on course to top a pool including Equatorial Guinea, their home and away opponents on the next two weekends.
South Africa bounced back with a 4-1 win over disappointing Equatorial Guinea in Pretoria and midfielder Kagisho Dikgacoi atoned for a dismal performance in Nigeria by opening and closing the scoring.
Morocco outclassed Mauritania 4-1, Mali edged Chad 2-1 and surprise packets Burkina Faso scored twice before half-time in a 2-0 victory over Burundi to maintain 100 percent records.
The 'Atlas Lions' of Morocco continue to impress under caretaker coach Fathi Jamal after an equally easy Group 8 win against Ethiopia last weekend and first place may be sealed before Frenchman Roger Lemerre takes charge next month.
Reigning African Footballer of the Year Frederic Kanoute from Spanish club Sevilla was the hero of Mali in steamy N'Djamena, scoring twice within 20 minutes of the kickoff before Betolngar Misdongar reduced arrears.
Mali, a major disappointment in the 2006 World Cup qualifiers, have made a bright start under Nigerian coach Stephen Keshi having defeated Congo 4-2 in Bamako last weekend.
Tunisia won by two goals also on the Indian Ocean island of Seychelles through goals from Issam Jomaa and Chaouki Ben Saada to give Portuguese Humberto Coelho a winning start as coach of the 'Carthage Eagles'.