Nigerians abroad: Dessers, Olayinka on target, Aribo impresses under ex-Arsenal star

There were some Nigerian stars in action on Thursday as the Europa League and Europa Conference League returned 

Soccernet highlights the performances of the Nigerian players that played for their clubs in Europe on Thursday night.

Joe Aribo put in a brilliant shift in his first match under Giovanni van Bronckhorst as Rangers sealed their place in the knockout stage of the Europa League with a 2-0 win over Sparta Prague at the Ibrox.

The former Arsenal left-back was in the stands on Sunday but would have been disappointed to see Rangers lose to Hibernian.

However, in his first match in the dugout since replacing Steven Gerrard, Rangers put up a dominant performance, with Aribo playing a part.

The Nigerian made two key passes, managed three shots off target and also hit the woodwork once. Aribo could have had a goal, but he missed two big chances.

Aribo was in action for 81 minutes as an Alfredo Morelos brace sealed Rangers place in the playoff draw. Leon Balogun, meanwhile, was missing from the encounter, but Calvin Bassey played the full 90 minutes.

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In Prague, Cyriel Dessers scored a brace while Peter Olayinka was also on target as Feyenoord and Slavia Prague played out a thrilling 2-2 draw in their Europa Conference League encounter. 

Feyenoord secured the top spot and qualified for the knockout round with the result. Meanwhile, Slavia will have to fight out second place with Union Berlin on the final matchday.

The German side beat Maccabi Haifa 1-0 away from home to stay in contention for qualification. Taiwo Awoniyi was in action, but he could not add to his impressive goal tally this season.

In Denmark, Raphael Onyedika was also in action as Midtjylland stayed in contention for a place in the knockout round of the Europa Conference League following a 3-2 win over Braga.

The young Nigerian midfielder played 88 minutes of the game. Erik Sviatchenko put Midtjylland ahead in the 2nd minute, but Ricardo Horta drew Braga level two minutes before the break.

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Gustav Isaksen restored the home side’s lead three minutes after the break, but Wenderson Galeno restored parity for the Portuguese side five minutes before time.

However, Evander’s strike in the second minute of added time sealed a dramatic win for Midtjylland. In England, Wilfred Ndidi was on target as Leicester City moved ahead of Spartak Moscow and Napoli in their Europa League group following a 3-1 win over Legia Warsaw.