Struggling Nigeria International Kelechi Nwakali, who will be hoping to make the Super Eagles list for March Afcon qualifiers, is brimming with much confidence after powering relegation strugglers Alcorcón to 2 wins in just 3 league games. This Monday, Alcorcón overcame Real Zaragoza 1:0 away following another slim 1:0 victory in their last group match against UD Logrones on 14 February. Nwakali played 90 minutes in both games and 62 minutes in his first game for the club against Ponferradina on 08 February. He is yet to score or provide an assist for the club but he has been hard working in the middle of the park. Having managed a pitiful 6 out 21 league matches (with less than 35 minutes each in most of those matches) in the Spanish La Liga with Huesca this season, Nwakali secured transfer to relegation strugglers Alcorcón this February with a view to gaining much gametime, boosting his confidence, helping the team to avoid relegation and reviving his own fast fading Super Eagles career. Prior to moving to Alcorcon, they were struggling badly in La Liga 2 with 0 wins in their last 4 league games as they languished at the bottom of the league table.
However, the feelgood factor that came with Nwakali's signing bore much fruit as he has helped propel them to 19th place in the 22-team league table with vital 6 points from 3 games.
Crucially, Nwakali has been restored to his much favoured attacking midfield position where he pulls the strings with neat passes, decent positional play and clever interlinks which have helped to open up defences.
However Nwakali's game still lacks adequate intensity and he hasn't started pulling above his own weight. Watching him play for Alcorcón thus far, despite his improved performance, one is left with the impression that Nwakali is capable of a whole lot more if he applies himself intensely with renewed diligence.
Once he starts to play with more vigor, vitality and venom, he will win more individual accolades and will be noticed and valued for his work ethics.
For now, he has been just 'okay' but his entrance to the club and the difference he has managed to make have culminated in Alcorcón's rise in the league table. Long may this continue.
What is left now is for the quality of Nwakali's own game to also continue to rise exponentially so he can be taken more seriously by the African football fraternity. He has lost quite a number of Nigeria fans who believe he is incapable of fulfilling earlier promise.
Only time will tell whether he can win doubters back.
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