Nigeria became the first African country to qualify for 2018 World Cup in Russia, after they beat Zambia 1-0 at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo on Saturday 7th October 2017. The first half of the encounter was electrifying full of much tension but ended goalless. Although the Zambia team was the better side with ball of possession of 54% against Super Eagles 46%. There was a forced substitution made in the first half due to injury sustained by Onazi and he was replaced by Mikel Agu in the 29th minutes into the game by Gernot Rohr, the coach of the Super eagles.
However the second half began under the whistle of the match official Joshua Bondo from Botswana. It took 73 minutes into the game to produce the first and only goal of the match. The goal was scored by Arsenal’s Alex Iwobi who was introduced by the coach as a substitute for Simon Moses. Iwobi finished off the play which gave rise to the goal following a nice combination between Victor Moses and Shehu Abdullahi.
The Super Eagles defense was made up of William Troost-Ekong and Leon Balogun playing the Central backs and Abdullahi Shehu and Elderson Echiejile playing the right and left back respectively while the midfield consists of John Obi Mikel, Ogenyi Onazi and Wilfred Ndidi. The attackers were Victor Moses, Moses Simon and Odion Ighalo. The match ended with Nigeria having 51% possession as against Zambia’s 49%.
Super Eagles right back, Shehu Abdullahi, was voted the Man of the Match for Nigeria’s win against the Chipopolo of Zambia. The named man of the match took home cash price of one million Naira (N 1,000,000)
Nigeria now has 13 points sitting at the top of the group with a game to spare against Algeria and remain unbeaten in this CAF qualifying group stage. This made Nigeria to qualify with Russia (host country for World Cup 2018), Brazil, Germany, Iran, South Korea, Spain, Mexico who also booked their places at next year’s tournament.
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