The Super Eagles are now doomed in their aspirations to
qualify for next year’s AFCON tournament in Gabon after
losing 0-1 to Egypt in Alexandria tonight. The task before
the Eagles became tougher after Friday’s 1-1 draw with
Egypt in Kaduna and the withdrawal of Chad from the
Nigeria missed out on the 2015 edition in Equatorial Guinea
and were desperate for a return. The first half ended
goalless with the Super Eagles keeping to coach Samson
Siasia’s tactical master plan to keep proceedings neat and
tidy and then attack the Egyptians on the counter.
But with the Egyptians resolute they soon found a way past
the Nigerians in the second half.
19 year old Ramadan Sobhy scored in the 65th minute
after a deflection off his shot ensured the Super Eagles left
the field with hands in their mouth. Upon scoring Nigeria,
the Egyptians introduced a striker with the hope that they
could pull the Nigerian defence across the lines knowing
fully well the Nigerians will attack, attack and attack as they
needed a goal badly.
Ighalo, ineffective throughout the match, drifted towards
the left side as new entrant Alex Iwobi and Ahmed Musa
tried to play centrally. Time and time again, Nigeria were
thwarted by the Egyptian defence causing the Nigerian
backline to play high up and expose themselves in 3 vs 4 or
3 vs 5 situations.
And then the moment of hope came! Victor Moses,
hardworking through out the night blazed a rocketing shot
from almost 30 yards which hit the bar and spiraled
towards the other corner. Victor Moses and the Super
Eagles bench were distraught, how wasn’t that a goal?
Even with four minutes of extra time, the Super Eagles
looked more likely conceding a goal than scoring one.
Nigeria with 2 points from three games, with just one game
against Tanzania remaining, is effectively out of
qualification for next year’s AFCON tournament.
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