WAFU B: Nigeria crumbles Cote D’Ivoire, qualifies for U20 AFCON

by Oviri Kelvin, Sports Editor Abuja

Nigeria Flying Eagles crumbled Cote d’Ivoire in a fiercely contested semi-final of the WAFU Zone B U20 Championship in Niamey to reach the final for the second time in four years on Tuesday.

Flying Eagles of Nigeria also the Under20 team of the nation’s football team won an automatic qualification through this victory to the U20 African Cup of Nations in Egypt.

The U20 national team, who finished as first runner-up in the maiden edition of the competition in 2018, opened the scoresheet in Niamey through the 5th-minute header of Daniel Daga, a versatile midfielder who has been key to Nigeria’s midfield success.

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Just like the hungry Eagle hunting for Its prey, the Flying Eagles launched series of attacks against the Ivorians to record a win at regular time but were unable to increase the margin.

However, the Ivorians responded from a clinically-taken free-kick at the edge of the Nigerians’ 18-yard box, tallying the scoreline to a one-all draw.

As the match progressed, neither team could get another goal to be on a safer side before the end of regulation time inside the Stade General Seyni Kountché, and the game went into extra time.

Consequently, Nigeria’s relentless effort finally paid off as Forward Ibrahim Yahaya slotted in a 111th-minute goal from the penalty spot to hand a 2-1 win to Coach Ladan Bosso’s team.

The seven-time African champions, will on Saturday, gun for their first-ever WAFU Zone B Championship trophy against a first-time finalist, the Benin Republic.

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