Super Eagles midfielder Wilfred Ndidi was not listed for action as his Premier League side, Leicester City, were held to a 2-2 draw by Chelsea in the day’s early kickoff at the King Power stadium.
Before now, Ndidi had returned earlier than scheduled from injury and it is not clear if his absence from Saturday’s crucial game has do with his fitness.
While Kelechi Iheanacho was introduced for Jamie Vardy in the 80th minute, it was the duo of Harvey Barnes and Ben Chilwell that got the goals for the Foxes in the home tie.
For the Blues, Antonio Rudiger was the hero as the Germany international grabbed headed in two goals as Frank Lampard’s side earned a valuable away point.
Elsewhere, Liverpool maintained their amazing run to a first Premier League title as the Reds romped to 4-0 home win over Southampton at Anfield also on Saturday.
After being held to a barren draw in the first half Jurgen Klopp’s men came blazing in the second half where they pumped in four goals to give them a 22-point cushion at top of the EPL log.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain broke the deadlock in the 47th minute before Jordan Henderson doubled Liverpool’s afterwards.
Mohamed Salah added two more goals to help Liverpool rack up a 16th straight league win.
Sheffield United moved up to fifth, five points behind Chelsea, as an own goal from Crystal Palace goalkeeper Vicente Guaita, earned the Blades a 1-0 win at Selhurst Park.
At the other end of the table, Bournemouth boosted their survival hopes with a valuable win, but West Ham and Watford both threw away two-goal leads to finish the day in the bottom three.
Alex Iwobi made his return from injury, starting and playing for 65 minutes as Everton came from behind to beat Watford.
On their part, Bournemouth made it back-to-back wins with a 2-1 success at home to Aston Villa thanks to goals late in the first half from Philip Billing and Nathan Ake.
Victory for the Cherries lifted them two points clear of the drop zone, level on points with Brighton, while Villa are a point further back.