General

​Chelsea Academy product Ola Aina produced his best performance in a Super Eagles jersey in a 1-0 win against Burundi in their Africa Cup of Nations opener on Saturday evening.

Nigeria manager Gernot Rohr publicly praised the performance of the Torino defender who is representing the national team in his first major tournament. 

Aina had a hand in the game-winning goal as Odion Ighalo converted a skillful backheeled pass from the fullback with 13 minutes remaining. 

Rohr praised the versatility of the former England U19 skipper who is capable of playing as a left back, right back, left wing-back and right wing-back.

''Ola Aina has improved really well. That’s why we tell our players to go to teams where they will play and get better,'' Rohr told reporters at the post-match press conference. 

''He is a different player entirely, his presence gives us another option when we play with three at the back as he can play as a wing-back.''

London-born Aina became cap-tied to Nigeria when he made his competitive debut in a World Cup qualifier against Zambia in October 2017.

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