Paul Onuachu nets brace in Genk’s comeback win against Mechelen
Nigeria striker Paul Onuachu scored twice on Sunday to help KRC Genk defeat KV Mechelen 3-1 at Luminus Arena, ending the Genkies four-match winless streak.
Played in front of over 3,000 fans, the game saw the hosts control the first five minutes, but it was Michele who opened the scores before Onuachu pulled his side level.
Onuachu — who was twice denied by the woodwork in quick succession in the first half of the game — made it three goals in two games, having found the back of the net in last week’s 5-2 loss at Beerschot.
In the 10th minute, the 26-year-old went low to head in Joakim Mæhle’s cross to cancel out swedish forward Kerim Mrabti’s sixth-minute opener.
Photo: Genk’s Paul Onuachu celebrates after scoring in Sunday’s win against Mechelen
Few minutes before half-time, Onuachu thought he had put his side in front.
The Nigerian saw his headed effort off Junya Ito’s brilliant cross hit the underside of the crossbar before the ball appeared to cross the line after his first header came back off the upright.
Onuachu claimed that the ball had crossed the line, but video replays proved the referee’s decision not to give a goal was right, as the ball only dropped on the line.
Eleven minutes after the break, though, Genk’s push for a second goal yielded result. Japan forward Ito turned a cross into the net at the back post to put The Smurfs in front.
On 68 minutes, the 27-year-old former Kashiwa star turned provider, finding Onuachu who nodded in to take his Jupiler Pro League goals tally to four goals for the season.
Nigeria coach Gernot Rohr is expected to release his squad list for October’s friendlies against Tunisia and Cote d’Ivoire.
The list is believed to have been compiled last week, so if Onuachu makes the list, it looks unlikely that his performance on Sunday played a role.
The former Midtjylland player last played for Nigeria in the friendly against Brazil in October 2019, which ended 1-1.
He was on the bench during the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Benin on 13 November 2019, but wasn’t part of the trip to Lesotho four days later.