FIFA U-20 World Cup: F’Eagles qualify for second round

…battle Ukraine to 1-1 draw, to face Italy or Senegal

The Flying Eagles yesterday booked their place in the second round of the FIFA U20 World Cup after a 1-1 draw with Ukraine.
The result saw Nigeria who began the day in second place finished third on four points – enough for them to finish among the best-four third placed teams.
Nigeria, as it was in the game against USA began slowly and it was the Europeans who fielded their second string team who took the lead in the 30th minute through Danylo Sikan.
With elimination starring them in the face, the two-time vice champions piled pressure on the Ukrainians and were awarded a penalty just before halftime but it was missed by Muhamed Tijani, whose low shot was parried by Andriy Lunin.
Tijani was to redeem himself soon after the restart as he converted another spot kick in the 51st minute this time sending Sikan the wrong way after a Video Assitant Referring (VAR) review spotted a handball by a Ukrainian defender.
With the match on knife-edge for Nigeria following the USA taking the lead against Qatar in another match which saw Nigeria and the North Americans swapping positions, Paul Aigbogun introduced the trio of Henry Offia, Peter Eledu and Collins For but the Ukrainians held on to confirm their winning the group on seven points while the USA placed second on six points following their 1-0 triumph over Qatar.
Nigeria’s bench were all in joyous mood after the final whistle as the four points were enough to see them through to the knockout stage.

News Category: