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Nigerian Football





Nigeria put up a more spirited effort in the second half of their pre World Cup encounter with England to put the score line at a respectable 1-2 loss.

Playing like a jittery lot in the opening half of the game the Super Eagles went two goals down following a seventh minute opening goal by Gary Cahill while Harry Kane double the lead in the 39th minute.

Harry Kane celebrates with Dele Alli after scoring for England against Nigeria.

The England side dominated the first half to the point that it took the Super Eagles 36 minutes before they had the first shot on target.


On resumption for the second half, Gernot Rohr made tactical changes that appeared to turn the game around.

Onazi was brought off for Oghenekaro Etebo. Shehu Abdulahi gave way for Tyronne Ebuehi. While Kenneth Omeruo came in for Leone Balogun and John Ogu for Joel Obi.

In a twinkle of an eye, the Nigerians were on the offensive. It was Odion Ighalo who took a powerful shot that beat England’s Goalkeeper Jordan Pickford. But the ball hit the base of the goalpost.

Alex Iwobi whose goal against Zambia gave Nigeria the World Cup ticket was again the hero. He reacted fast enough with the rebound to find the net. It was Nigeria’s first ever goal against England.

It was also the first time England had conceded a goal in over 11 hours of football.


Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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