Nigeria took a big step towards next year’s World Cup in Russia when they trounced African champions Cameroon 4-0 to consolidate their leadership of their qualifying group.
The Super Eagles now have nine points from three matches, while Cameroon remain on two points.
Both teams will clash again on Monday in Yaounde.
Zambia and Algeria have a point each and clash tomorrow in Lusaka in continuation of the series.
After a rather tentative start by the home team, Odion Ighalo marked his return to the Super Eagles with the opening goal after 29 minutes.
He overpowered his marker after he received a clever assist from skipper Mikel Obi before he fired past a diving goalkeeper Fabrice Ondoa.
The Eagles doubled their lead in the 43rd minute, when Mikel turned scorer from provider by poking a Victor Moses corner from the left beyond the Cameroon goalkeeper.
In the 55th minute, Victor Moses made it 3-0 when he initiated a quick counter and then released Moses Simon, who did well to pass back to his namesake, who fired the third goal.
A fourth goal from a flying header off Ogenyi Onazi’s right cross by substitute Kelechi Iheanacho in the 76th minute crowned a very satisfying outing for the hosts.
Both teams went into the attack from the first whistle with Cameroon threatening through Moumi Ngamaleu, but his effort from inside the box missed narrowly as Ikechukwu Ezenwa was the busier of the two goalkeepers in the early minutes of the game.
The Indomitable Lions took the game to Nigeria rather than sit back in their defence.
The Egyptian referee struck off a Nigerian goal by Ighalo for offside after 24 minutes, before Victor Moses header off a Moses simon cross missed target four minutes later.
However, the home fans will celebrate the first goal of this bruising contest in the 29th minute, when Ighalo latched on to a long ball by Mikel, held off his marker before he fired beyond the goalkeeper.
In the 36th minute, Moses Simon was only denied by a big save by goalkeeper Ondoa as Nigeria continued to pour forward.
The lively Victor Moses then went clear of the Cameroon defence on 42 minutes, but his through ball aimed at Ighalo inside the box was timely cleared by a Cameroon defender.
The Eagles dominance was established two minutes from the break with an opportunistic goal by the impressive captain Mikel.
Cameroon began the second half just as they did the first half and in the 48th minute Ezenwa did well to save a low drive by Zambo Anguissa.
Ezenwa then kept out a tricky shot from distance in the 64th minute before Nigeria again surged forward to create two more goals and complete the demolition of the Indomitable Lions.
Super Eagles start list vs Cameroon (4-2-3-1) Ikechukwu Ezenwa; Elderson Echiejile, Shehu Abdullahi, Leon Balogun, William Troost-Ekong; Wilfred Ndidi, Ogenyi Onazi; Victor Moses (Ahmed Musa 82), Mikel Obi (Skipper)(Mikel Agu 68), Moses Simon; Odion Ighalo (Kelechi Iheanacho 61).
By Samm Audu for Score Nigeria
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