Flying Eagles Squad.
Nigeria qualify for 2023 Africa U-20 Cup of Nations
NIGERIA’s U20 boys, Flying Eagles, overpowered fit-fighting Ivory Coast in an explosive semi-final match to reach the final of the ongoing WAFU B U-20 Championship in Niamey.
The late Tuesday night’s match 2-1 victory not only gave them a ticket to Saturday’s final match but also came a ticket to next year’s Africa Under-20 Cup of Nations scheduled for Egypt, NFF said in a statement on Wednesday.
Ubiquitous midfielder Daniel Daga put Nigeria in front after only five minutes when he cleverly escaped the attention of the Ivorian defenders to nod in from a well-weighted pull-out.
Neither team could find another goal to gain upper hand before the end of regulation time inside the Stade General Seyni Kountché, and the game went into extra time.
The seven-time African champions then launched onslaught after onslaught on the Ivorian goal but failed to add to the tally, before the Ivorians equalized just before halftime from an intelligently-taken free kick at the edge of Nigeria’s eighteen-yard box.
Forward Ibrahim Yahaya got the winner for Nigeria in the 111th minute of play when he tucked in from the penalty spot to make it 2-1.
Nigeria will square up against neighbours Benin Republic in Saturday’s final.
WORDS ON MARBLE: “The difference between a politician and a statesman is that the politician thinks of the next election, while the statesman thinks of the next generation”.