FIFA U-20 World Cup: Nigeria Shocks Argentina 2-0

The Flying Eagles of Nigeria were in super form Wednesday night edging out tournament favourites, Argentina , the hosting nation and record six-time champions, from the FIFA U-20 World Cup.

After a cagey first half that ended goalless, the Flying Eagles burst into the lead in the 61st minute through Ibrahim Mohammad to silence the capacity crowd

Just as the  Argentines were struggling to equalise and possibly push the game into extra time, Rilwany Haliru Sarki’s flying header ended their dream

Commenting on the magnificent performance of the Nigerians, football analyst, Desmond Ekwueme said that Flying Eagles surprised even themselves with the resounding 2-0 Round of 16 win over host Argentina.

Ekwueme said: “While the team is still basking in the euphoria of the victory the players and technical crew must be reminded that they are not in the tournament just to be beat Argentina or to be satisfied doing so.

“T”his victory if nothing has sent a signal across to other quarter finalists that Nigeria has the potential of reaching the final. Therefore, all other opponents will come hard and tough on the Flying Eagles in their remaining fixtures.

“Argentina fans will now be hostile to the Flying Eagles for ending their dream of doing a double after winning the Qatar 2022 World Cup last December. Indeed, they will attempt to frustrate the Nigerian lads.

“The boys have to remain focus and level headed over the fixtures ahead. They must play with caution to avoid cards as they approach the crucial stages of the tournament.

“At this point the boys should be reminded that they have three games left to win this tournament….and the only problem they would face is complacency.

“They need to be fully focused..and this is where agents and scouts must be kept away from the boys to avoid distractions. Once agents and scouts besiege the camp of the team as a result of the win over Argentina, crisis may set in to end the journey of this team.

“With the win over hosts Argentina, the journey of Flying Eagles in the tournament has just started. The players must be reminded that twice Nigeria has reached the final of this tournament and twice they lost to Portugal and Argentina in Saudi ’89 and Netherlands 2005 editions respectively..

“Therefore, it is upto the boys to seize the opportunity presented to them by this tournament to carve a niche for themselves. Nothing would gladden the hearts of Nigerians than winning the tournament which is a possibility with hard work.

“Impossibility is nothing. If Argentina could fall despite playing as hosts then, any other team can fall. One just hopes the NFF motivates the boys fully at this point to propel them to greater heights in this tournament.

“This isn’t a time for delay or non-payment of bonuses and allowances. It’s not a time for stories or excuses of failure. The team should be adequately motivated now. Again, the journey has just started.”


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