By Harri Burton

20th Nov, 2023 | 7:59am

International media react to West Brom star Semi Ajayi in Nigeria draw v Zimbabwe

West Brom defender Semi Ajayi played out another 90 minutes for Nigeria as the Super Eagles looked to make headway in World Cup qualification.

Following a 1-1 draw against Lesotho last week, a nation ranked 153rd in the world, Nigeria were thwarted by a lesser opponent once again, falling to the same fate against Zimbabwe on Sunday 19 November.

West Brom’s Ajayi was amongst the starting XI to take on Zimbabwe, forming a centre-back partnership with Fulham’s Calvin Bassey.

With the player ratings shared by Soccernet, the West Brom man was awarded just an average 6.5 for his performance, which left Nigeria in second place and one point behind South Africa.

They wrote: “Partnered with Calvin Bassey in central defence once again, the duo showed more synergy and communication in working together.”

World Cup qualification looms

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Nigeria and Zimbabwe make up a third of Group C in the World Cup Qualification CAF, with South Africa, Lesotho, Rwanda and Benin taking up the remaining spots.

The Super Eagles are the clear favourite to top the group, but after a slow start to the qualifying campaign, Ajayi and his team will be hoping to pick up all six points against South Africa and Benin when the next couple of fixtures roll back around next summer.

Nigeria will be disappointed with their start, especially with the overflowing talent within the squad – Kelechi Iheanacho from Leicester City, Nottingham Forest’s Ola Aina, not to mention the in-form Victor Boniface and Taiwo Awoniyi.

Carlos Corberan will be hoping for more positivity upon his return to The Hawthorns, with some huge games coming up in the Championship promotion race.

Ajayi has been in and out of the side, but has certainly proven to be a real positive like so many others alongside him in what has been a challenging division so far.

In other West Brom news, the club are interested in an “assist king”