Nigeria’s national Under-20 team; the Flying Eagles on Wednesday came from behind to beat regional arch rivals Ghana 4-2 to progress to the semi-final of the West African Football Union (WAFU) Cup UFOA B competition for players below the age of twenty, going on in Lome, the Togolese capital.
Coached by Paul Aigbogun, the Flying Eagles were held to a barren draw by Niger in their opening game in the competition on Sunday but they bounced back with an emphatic triumph over Ghana who crash out having lost their opener against Niger.
The Nigerians fell behind just before the half hour mark through Emmanuel Toku’s fine finish but the Flying Eagles drew level before half time courtesy of Maxwell Effiom’s effort. With time running out in the second half, Nigeria found the back of the net three times in the final ten minutes to take the game beyond the Black Sattelites.
Ibrahim Abubakar emphatically converted a penalty kick for Nigeria before further strikes from Enyimba duo Wasiu Alalade and Maxwell Effiom (the latter’s second of the day) sealed the win although Toku provided a final act with a beautiful free kick for Ghana in the closing stages.
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The win takes Nigeria through to the semi-final which will be decided on Friday at the Stade Municipal in Lome, Togo. The Flying Eagles will face the Baby Eagles of Mali in the second semi-final game after the Maliens finished second behind the Baby Lions of Senegal in Group A.
Niger Republic who will host next year’s Under-20 Africa Cup of Nations finished second behind Nigeria in Group B and will face the Senegalese side in Friday’s first semi-final match. The competition will end on Monday.
Picture credit: Steven Lavon