Flying Eagles All But Qualifies For 2023 Africa U-20 Cup Of Nations
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By Ebube Dike
Nigeria male U-20 national team, the Flying Eagles have all but qualified for the 2023 Africa U-20 Cup of Nations to be hosted by Egypt .
The Ladan Bosso led boys on Sunday defeated West Africa Football Union, WAFU U-20 Zone defending champions, Ghana 2-0 in the opening Group B encounter to keep a massive hope of qualification for the 2023 event.
Ibrahim Muhammad put the Nigerians’ noses in front after only 6 minutes, and the seven –time African champions showed composure, confidence and calmness as they dominated the Black Satellites easily.
Adams Olubi could have made it 2-0 for Nigeria towards the end of the first half but fluffed his lines after a good team move had carved open the Ghanaian rearguard and left him with only the goalkeeper to beat.
The Flying Eagles eventually made sure of the three points in the second half at the Stade General Seyni Kountché, when substitute Ahmed Abdullahi slotted into the net in the 78th minute after a series of onslaughts left the Ghanaians in disarray.
The three points put Nigeria in pole position to qualify from a group that has only three teams. The Flying Eagles will play their last match of the group on Wednesday against Burkina Faso.
The result could determine the fate of Cup holders and reigning African champions Ghana, as they would be condemned to defeat the Burkinabes when both teams clash at the same venue on Sunday next week.
Scorer of Nigeria’s first goal, Ibrahim Muhammad was voted man of the match.
Nigeria need only a point to book their passage into the semi-final and automatically qualify for the 2023 Africa U-20 Cup of Nations which will hold in Egypt from 18 February to 12 March.
Meanwhile, Cote d’Ivoire produced some brilliant performance to defeat hosts Niger 1-0 to get their 2022 WAFU B U20 Championship campaign underway in a promising fashion on Saturday.