Europa League: Boniface eyes 17th goal of the season


Johnny Edward.

Nigerian winger, Victor Boniface, will hope his goals could help Union Saint-Gilloise secure a place in the round of 16 of the UEFA Europa League on Thursday (today) when they face Sporting Braga, PUNCH Sports Extra reports.

The Belgian outfit are currently on a run of five consecutive wins, will head into the encounter aiming to maintain their 100 per cent record in Europe against the Portuguese side who seek to end their three-game losing streak and move top of Group D of the Europa League.

Boniface, who joined the Belgians on a four-year deal from Bodo/Glimt in a deal worth €2m in the summer, has scored 16 times this season.

The 21-year-old scored 13 goals for Bodo/Glimt before he joined Union Saint-Gilloise and in 11 games for his new team, the in-form forward has found the back of the net three times – two in the league and one in the Europa League.

At the Estadio Anoeta in Spain, Iyayi Atiemwen will miss Sheriff Tiraspol’s match-day four clash against Real Sociedad due to suspension.

The 26-year-old was cautioned in the Moldovan champions’ last three games against Real Sociedad, Manchester United and Omonia Nicosia.

His countryman Rasheed Akanbi is expected to feature in the game as he aims to add to his tally of three goals this season.

Also, Moses Simon is expected to be in action for Nantes, when they host Freiburg in their reverse fixture, with Nantes having endured a dreadful start to the current campaign.

They have managed just one win in 10 league matches overall, while they have lost ground in the Europa League, with successive defeats to Qarabag FK and Freiburg. They beat Olympiacos on the opening match-day.

Antoine Kombouare’s side are languishing in second to bottom place in Ligue 1, having taken only one point from their last five league games.

With four relegation places in France’s topflight this season, as the French Football Federation aim to reduce Ligue 1 to 18 teams across a couple of years, the Canaries appear to be in serious danger of sliding down to Ligue 2 for the first time in a decade.