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Friday, June 14, 2024

Nigeria Advances to Afcon Semi-finals with a Nerve-Wracking 1-0 Victory Over Angola

By John Adiasi

Nigeria Advances to Afcon Semi-finals with a Nerve-Wracking 1-0 Victory Over Angola

In a tense showdown at Abidjan, Nigeria’s national football team, the Super Eagles, clinched a hard-fought 1-0 victory against Angola, securing a spot in the Africa Cup of Nations semi-finals. Ademola Lookman, the former Fulham and Everton winger, emerged as the hero of the match, scoring the decisive goal in the 41st minute.

The game started with Nigeria’s star striker Victor Osimhen making two close attempts with headers in the first half.

The first chance came when he connected with Moses Simon’s cross but failed to beat the goalkeeper. Osimhen’s second header, off Ola Aina’s long throw, also missed the mark.

However, it was Lookman who broke the deadlock just before halftime, capitalizing on a brilliant play orchestrated by Moses Simon and Alex Iwobi.

Iwobi’s precise pass found Simon on the wing, who then delivered a pinpoint cross to Lookman. The winger skillfully outplayed Angola’s defense and smashed the ball into the net, giving Nigeria the much-needed lead.

As the second half unfolded, both teams fought fiercely for control. Calvin Bassey’s attempt with a close-range overhead kick was denied, with the ball sailing over the bar.

Angola came agonizingly close to equalizing when Zini’s strike hit the inside of the post and bounced away, leaving Nigeria breathing a sigh of relief.

Osimhen almost doubled Nigeria’s lead, only to have his goal disallowed by VAR for offside, much to Angola goalkeeper Antonio Dominique’s relief.

In the final moments of the game, Osimhen missed another opportunity to seal the victory as his shot was blocked by Angola’s defender, Kialonda Gaspar.

With this hard-earned victory, Nigeria now sets its sights on the semi-final clash against the winner of Cape Verde versus South Africa.

The Super Eagles, led by coach Jose Peseiro, are determined to secure their fourth Africa Cup of Nations title and continue their quest for glory in Abidjan.

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