Moses Simon: Spanish midfielder, French stars applaud as Super Eagles ace ends 10-month goal drought

The Nigeria international endured a lengthy spell without celebrating a goal but he put an end to it with a stunning strike at the weekend

FC Nantes winger Moses Simon ended a 10-month goal drought with a “fantastic” lob during Sunday’s match against Clermont, earning praise from his coach and teammates, reports.

Simon’s last goal celebration had become a distant memory, but the 28-year-old Nigerian winger changed that narrative with a remarkable lob.

“I saw the goalkeeper advancing and I shot,” Simon recounted to France Bleu, clearly thrilled with his performance.

This goal marked a significant moment for Simon, who is in the final year of his contract with FC Nantes, describing it as “a very beautiful thing.”

Having endured a challenging period, with 25 matches without finding the net, Simon was hardly recognizable compared to his early days with the club.

“I try to be the best possible each season,” Simon admitted, acknowledging the ups and downs in his career.

However, on the slopes of Puy-de-Dôme, he seems to have rediscovered his form, though the consistency of this resurgence remains to be proven.

Spanish midfielder and Nantes captain Pedro Chrivella, reflected on Simon’s journey, stating,

“Last season, he had more or less difficult moments, it’s like a lot of players, it’s human. I saw him with his head down and he had lost confidence.

“But this is not the case now. I’m very happy to see him at this level. He’s a guy who makes differences, who makes us go up with the ball, who makes us breathe.”

During the 2022-2023 season, Moses Simon scored just five goals in the league. His goal against Clermont is his first this term.

Nantes goalkeeper Remy Descamps highlighted Simon’s impact on the team, saying,

“He has a lot of legs at the moment, that does us a lot of good. He makes us gain a lot of ground, he is present in the impact. Today, he scores a great goal, with a superb intuition and we are very happy to have him with us.”

Marcus Coco, Nantes right winger, emphasized the importance of confidence in Simon’s resurgence, stating,

“What makes him not the same man is confidence. A footballer needs it. The holidays did him good. He came back with new intentions, clear ideas. At this moment, he has success but he has always had the push.”

Nantes’ head coach, Pierre Aristouy has also showed praises on the Super Eagles winger.

The 43-year-old manager hailed Simon as “a great professional and a great guy” and acknowledged that what we see now is the real Moses Simon. Aristouy believes Simon has reached the age of maturity and possesses greater mastery in his game.

“What we see today is the real Moses,” notes Aristouy.

“He is a top athlete. He has an ego and he must have realized that last year he had a season half-hearted. But at the moment, he is good, in good shape, decisive this afternoon. 

“I have the feeling that he is reaching the age of maturity, which means that he has even more mastery in what he does. His goal is an inspiration, but it’s also a sign that he has a lot of mastery. He’s a great pro, a great guy to live with. I’m super happy for him.”

Simon has a goal and one assist in five games for Nantes this season.

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