WAFU B U-17: Golden Eaglets beat Cote d’Ivoire to qualify for U-17 AFCON
NNN: Five-time world champions Golden Eaglets on Tuesday in Cape Coast, Ghana defeated their Ivorian counterparts 3-1 in the semi-finals of the WAFU B Under-17 Championship.
The victory enabled the Nigerian side to qualify for the 2023 Under-17 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) slated for Algeria.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Eaglets staged a remarkable comeback from a goal down to defeat Cote d’Ivoire at the Cape Coast Stadium.
Two goals by deadball expert Emmanuel Michael and a glancing header by Abubakar Abdullahi condemned Cote d’Ivoire to a 1-3 loss in the competition’s first semi-final match.
Yet, the Eaglets uncharacteristically conceded first when Yan Diomande scored from the penalty kick spot in the very first minute after a foul in the Nigerian box.
The Nigerian boys launched onslaughts after onslaughts and were rewarded on the half-hour mark.
This was when Michael, who scored a spectacular goal from a 22-yard free-kick in the opening match against hosts Ghana, found the range off another free-kick from the right wing.
Thirteen minutes later, Nigeria were ahead for the first time in the encounter.
This was after Michael, again from a free-kick at the edge of the box, blindsided goalkeeper Mohamed Cisse with an intelligent attempt that swept past the static wall.
Cote d’Ivoire came into the second half determined to browbeat the Eaglets with their size and stoutness.
But they were pegged further back on the hour mark when Abdullahi found the net with a glancing header.
Four minutes later, the Baby Elephants were down to ten men after Makhete N’diaye was shown the red card for an unsporting behavior.
Another free-kick by Michael in the 77th minute missed target narrowly, and Precious Williams came very close with four minutes left after a brilliant team move set him up with a clear chance.
The Eaglets will take on the winners of the second semi-final match between hosts Ghana and Burkina Faso in Friday’s final match.
However, victory over Cote d’Ivoire meant Nigeria will be one of the eight participating teams at next year’s Under-17 AFCON in Algeria.
Defender and deadball prodigy Michael was presented with the Man-of-the-Match award after the game for the third consecutive match.
- 120 correctional centre inmates in Enugu gain admission into National Open University
- We’ll ensure changes in DisCos don’t disrupt service – FG
- Research: CSO tasks Kwara Govt on budget spendings
- Buhari salutes Army on 2022 NADCEL
- NMet predicts 3-day cloudiness, sunshine from Thursday
- Eid-el-Kabir: FRSC begins enlightenment campaign for motorists in Kano
- Barkindo’s death: NOG organisers call off 2022 dinner/award night
- Gov. Bagudu approves N52.9m for Kebbi boarding schools to celebrate sallah
- Nigerian petroleum industry holds night of tributes for Barkindo
- Our governorship candidate yet to announce running mate – Lagos PDP
- NSCDC urges newly recruited officers to maintain discipline, commitment
- Nigeria requires over 350m trees yearly to check deforestation – NCF
- FEMA, JICA empower IDPs in Abuja
- 2023: Group tasks INEC on peaceful, fair polls
- Influencer urges youths to maximise social media for wealth creation
- NOA expresses readiness to partner with CSOs, others on vote-buying
- Plateau APC Guber Candidate picks Butmang as running mate
- UK wants improved implementation of disability laws in Nigeria
- Running mate: PDP group faults voting by screening committee
- Gov. Fintiri commiserates with Barkindo family