U20 world cup: Nigeria beat host Argentina to reach quarter-finals

Nigeria defeated Argentina 2-0 on Wednesday and consequently advanced to the FIFA U-20 World Cup quarterfinals.

The Flying Eagles went into the round of eight in a nail-biting battle thanks to goals from Ibrahim Muhammad and Rilwanu Haliru Sarki in the Round of 16 games.

Nigeria made a powerful opening statement, showing that they intended to attack. However, as the first half went on, La Albiceleste gradually grabbed control of the match.

Veliz had a couple of chances to start the scoring, but Nigeria’s Kingsley Aniagboso stopped two of his attempts. He barely missed the crossbar with one of his headers.

The Nigerian victory came in the second half. Ibrahim Muhammad received an excellently weighted pass over the top from Emmanuel Umeh and expertly steered the ball away from Federico Gomes Gerth.

As Argentina intensified their pursuit for a tying goal, the Nigerian team joyfully celebrated the goal. Nigeria briefly breathed a sigh of relief after Luka Romero’s potent low strike rattled the inside of the post because he came agonizingly close to levelling the score.

Argentina pushed forward fiercely, desperate to keep their tournament aspirations alive, which caused the atmosphere in the stadium to reach a fever pitch. Rilwanu Haliru Sarki became the match’s hero for Nigeria in the closing seconds, in a spectacular turn of events.

When there was little more time left, Sarki leapt high to meet with a cross and guided a wonderfully timed header into the goal.

The joy that followed was evidence of how far Nigeria had come. With this incredible result, Nigeria advances to the quarterfinals, where they will play the winner of Sunday’s match between Ecuador and the Republic of Korea in Santiago del Estero.


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