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Abidjan
27/07/2013 15:00

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Nigeria secured a first time passage to the African Nations Championship despite losing to Ivory Coast

Posted: 27 July 2013 Time: 19:39

Nigeria secured a first time passage to the African Nations Championship despite losing 2-0 to an excellent Côte d'Ivoire team.

Needing three clear goals to advance, and with a noisy, heaving crowd behind them, the Elephants were quick off the blocks, as Zougoula and Cheick Moukouro raided down their left channel.

It did not take them long too threaten. Zougoula evaded three Nigerian defenders with a slick turn, and sent the ball wide out to Moukouro.

His cross was near perfect, until it was dealt with by Godfrey Oboabona. That was just four minutes in.

Two minutes later, they had the breakthrough. Azubuike Egwuekwe, under no pressure, sent a short back header to goalkeeper Chigozie Agbim.

The goalie was caught cold, in no man's land as he raced off his line to rescue the situation. Zougoula was quicker, toe-poked the ball underneath the keeper.

If the Robert Chambroux Stadium was noisy before, the goal turned it even more raucous.

Inspired by their early breakthrough, the Elephants pressed forward, contesting and winning the majority of the 50/50 balls as the Super Eagles laboured to get a foothold in the game.

Egwuekwe came inches close to making amends for his earlier error, but rose unmarked to head Gomo Onduku's cross over the bar.

Not long after, it was 2-0.

Solomon Kwambe cleared a short corner, but not far enough, and it fell to Zougoula with his back to goal.

Rabiu Ali, in his attempt to make a better clearance, took the forward with the ball. The referee pointed to the spot, Zougoula picked himself up and drilled past Agbim.

With elimination staring them in the face, the Super Eagles worked themselves back into the game, and Gomo Onduku tested the goalkeeper just before half-time.

If the first half clearly belonged to the Elephants, the second was edged by the Eagles.

As Sunday Mba's influence grew, so did the Nigerians' control of the game, although they did dodge a bullet early in the half when Zougoula escaped the attentions of Benjamin Francis and came face to face with Agbim. But the goalkeeper stood his ground, narrowed the angle and made a decisive save.

Substitute Alhaji Gero helped swing the attacking tide even further Nigeria's way when he came on for Onduku, and almost set up a chance for Mba with his first touch.

He came close in his own right when played clean through by Mba, but Mathias Kassi intervened just before Gero pulled the trigger.

Both sides found half chances but nothing clear cut. With time running out, Zougoula went down in the box under a challenge by Oboabona, but the referee waved his appeals away.

Nigeria held on and qualify 4-3 on aggregate to reach the finals for the first time.

Previous comments on this story...

blackpanther187
posted: 07:44 pm
omg
Santi
posted: 07:57 pm
They really made a bad start allowing the ivorians score 2 early goals unsettled the game for them, good they came back stronger to shut them out, and i must applaud the mental strength of this boys 2 goals down away any team would have fallen apart but they held on, am proud of them and respect to my fellow nigerians we take every SE game serious, some nearly developed hpb today.
jide_faleye@yahoo.co.uk
posted: 08:02 pm
I knew it was not going to be easy for Eagles in Abidjan. Thank God we went through anyway. Congrats!
Anonymous
posted: 08:07 pm
WHAT A BRAVE SCORE LINE...............THANKS GOD FOR THE PAST FIRST LEG THAT ENDED 4-1 AGREEGATE IN FAVOR OF NIG........... IT QUITE SAD WHEN I HEARED THAT COTE/IVOIRE IS LEADING BY 2-0 DOWN IN FAVOR OF COTE/IVOIRE AND I CAN ASSURE U THAT THE SCORELINE HAS BROUGHT A HUGE HYPERTENSION TO FELLOW NIGERIA FANS........OGA KESHI, PLEASE U STILL NEEDS TO WORK HARD IN OUR DEFENSE LINE .......
ALL D SAME CONGRATULATION.....UP NIG/ UP KESHI....UP NIG SUPPORTER...AND ALSO UP FELLOW FORUMITES ........D'SKOOL
feccojunior
posted: 08:25 pm
When i saw the 2-0 scoreline in the first half i was near dead,

never watched a Nigerian match without tension
danielsax
posted: 08:48 pm
Congrats guys you did ur best
drjackdanny
posted: 08:50 pm
Congrats Nigeria...I following the match and I must confess that the 1st 35 minutes were so upsetting going by the what the different live updates were showing. I think Oboabona played well as well as Mba and Chibuzo helped bring sparkle into the eagles team when he came in. Congrats once more countrymen.
Nkata Offor 1 of Igbo land
posted: 09:12 pm
If any country in Africa can score SUPPER EAGLE 2-0 and get free then no team yet mr.keshi. You are trying but supporting you is like climbing mounting inwhich one can decide to come down anytime, Frankly Siasia play better game than you my brother, no team ever in Africa or in the world will beat Siasia selections 2-0 and get free, if u remember tell me. You dnt know how to position players my brother. Champion wins home and away. Siasia play better Nigeria ways of football but you play gather and play. i weak jooooo. And na d same pple u ar using to go world cut, then we are going to represent Tahiti
Anonymous
posted: 09:20 pm
@ Nkata ofor,please can you tell me what was siasia achievement with homebase eagles ?
Nnewiman from Santa Monica
posted: 09:20 pm
Nigeria vs civ we re not done yet watch out for the big one both teams might meet in play off for brazil
Anonymous
posted: 09:29 pm
@NKATA OFFOR 1 OF IGBO LAND................U HAVE COME AGAIN...........WHY CAN'T YOU BE REALISTIC FOR ONCE.........WHY DID U LOVED TO ALWAYS EMBRACED FAILURE............EVERYTIME U MAKE COMMENT U MUST MENTION KESSHI THIS AND KESHI THAT ALL FOR THE SAKE OF PRAISING UR FAILURE COACH SIASIA WHO CAN NOT EVEN QUALIFY NIG TO COMMON AFCON............PLS, IF U ARE REALLY THE SON OF SOIL OF MY DEARLY IGBO LAND........PLEASE ENOUGH OF THIS........SIASIA IS NOW IN EXILE WHERE IS STILL HIDDING HIS HEAD FOR HIS RECENT FAILURE. YET U STILL HAVE THE GOT TO ALWAYS COME HERE TO TELL US ABOUT SIASIA..........SIASIA MY FOUT BECAUSE I HATE BUNCH OF FAILURE. PLEASE BRO BEHALVED URSELF AND STOP BEHALVING LIKE A KID BECAUSE OF YOUR OVER LIKENESS OF SIASIA D FAILURE......PLEASE....PLEASE.....PLEASE JOIN THE MOVING TRAIN NKATA OFFOR BEFORE U SOUND LIKE UR NAMES.....I REST MY WORD. UP KESHI / UP NIG / UP FELOW ENLIGHTED FORUMITE SUPPORTERS OF S.E PROGRESS OF D MOVING TRAIN. WHETHER U LIKE IT, OR NOT IN KESHI WILL STAND...........KESHI FOREVER.

D'SKOOOL .
FROM DAKAR SENEGAL
EMAIL: school_boy20005@yahoo.com
ijiesyoung
posted: 09:37 pm
@Nkata ofor,mind your talk here! Your Siasia home eagles lost final to Togo home guys at Abiola stadium 3years ago,the same cup Amokachi won 2yrs earlier.
Alhajibolaji556
posted: 09:45 pm
Siasia d**kriders are back again...
Nkata Offor 1 of Igbo land
posted: 09:56 pm
@Anonymous, I am 100% in support of building home base eagle but I am not in support in playing politics in SUPPER EAGLE, There are level u must attend in football before u qualify to play for SUPPER EAGLE, categorically a play who pass through u17,u20 and u23 qualify authormatically to became a SUPPER EAGLE member whos waiting for callup, to play SUPPER EAGLE unless someone somewhere have some extra skills which attracts coach and fans before u can be callup. Tell me the style keshi is playing now? Is he build our local Supper Eagle or our National Team? See, no coach can parade or organize the kind of player Siasia assembled. please leave stories one can be lucky. Listen Nigeria u23 under Siasia need a draw to go to Beijing 98, Siasia came to Ghana and get draw and they are all local players, dnt u know that any u23 is a confirmed SUPPER EAGLE age, u dnt know football but u are shouting and supporting blindly, Tell your friend truth. Siasia start with Nigeria local players u20,u23, and SUPPER EAGLE, what achievement again do you want? which coach in Nigeria have coach u20,u23 and SUPPER EAGLE tell me? Siasia is not coaching with mouth but with experience.
Nkata Offor 1 of Igbo land
posted: 10:02 pm
Is keshi rebuilding our local Supper Eagle or our National Team? Plz I need an answer.
Nkata Offor 1 of Igbo land
posted: 10:10 pm
Are not ashamed of urself dat u lost 2-0 and be gnashing teeth here, ar u jubilation failure right?
Apiripah
posted: 10:23 pm
After the 3 spanked 0 from Spain,I decided to stay away from Keshi's team.There is nothing enthusiastic and eager anymore in Nigerian football.Eagles are beatable anytime,any day.The only problem facing Nigerians and their team is nothing more than what one commenter by name Nkata Offor,said."Position of players & selections".The fluid nature of the modern football is far away from Nigerian football.No matter what you think or say,Football results are depending on the tactical formation from coach,losing to 2 unreplied goals,is nowhere tactical.
topstarz
posted: 10:27 pm
Hahahah when Nkita Speak , It reminds me of an Imbecile Hungry grass eating Dog
naijabreed
posted: 10:44 pm
We were defeated in d battle, but we won d war. Winning and qualifying 4 competitions mk a team stronger and dat is wat our own born coach Oga, sir keshi is doing. He has broken anoda record again, 1st indigenous coach 2 qualify naija 2 our 1st ever chan. I don't care whether we loose or win in ivory coast, d most important tin is dat we qualified ahead of a strong team.
@Nkata offor I am still don't understand wat u mean and wat u want frm keshi?
Nkata Offor 1 of Igbo land
posted: 10:53 pm
@topstarz keshi did not know how to position players
@topstarz, keshi dnt know how to select players. he suffered them in the of field of playing because of wrong selection, no pace, no sign,no ball control, no overlapping etc. Nothing to show that this is Nigeria SUPPER EAGLE are playing, Is this rebuilding? who are you rebuilding? National team? or local Team? hahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa@topstarz. Take good look at Siasia team, his 1st 11 and 2nd 11 and call me back. Are you not seeing that keshi is confused? SUPPER EAGLE is not for experimental coach. You cannot tell me that there is no qualified 22 players in Nigeria home and abroad. HMMMMMMMMMMMMM
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