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FLASHBACK: RASHIDI YEKINI’S LAST GOAL IN COMPETITIVE GAMES AS SUPER EAGLES DEBUT AT WORLD CUP

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BY KUNLE SOLAJA

It is 26 years today that the Super Eagles made a debut at the World Cup on 21 June 1994 in Dallas, beating Bulgaria 3-0. On a day of record setting, Nigeria became the first Anglophone African nation at the World Cup.

Not done yet, the Super Eagles became the first African team to have a three-goal margin win at the World Cup just as the bulky Rashidi Yekini became Nigeria’s first scorer at the World Cup following his perfect connection of a right-sided pass from Finidi George in the 21st minute.

The photograph of his celebration of the goal was one of the most circulated at the tournament. He later offered the assist to Daniel Amokachi to score in the 43rd minute.

Rashidi Yekini celebrates Nigeria’s first World Cup goal and his last for Super Eagles

The goal also happened to be the last in a competitive game. He scored his last in a friendly match against Jamaica.

Barely 10 minutes into the second half, Emmanuel Amuneke scored his first Super Eagles’ goal when, with a flying header, he nodded home a right sided float from Finidi George.

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In beating Bulgaria, the Super Eagles extended the European country’s consecutive matches without a win at the World Cup to 17. The no-win streak of Bulgaria ran from 30 May 1962 at the World Cup in Chile.  

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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