BY KUNLE SOLAJA.
Nigeria’s Flying Eagles will have to step up their skills as they have been drawn against five-time winners, Brazil in the FIFA U-20 World Cup which begins in a month’s time in Argentina.
In addition, the Flying Eagles in Group D are drawn against Italy and Dominican Republic.
While they had never faced Dominican Republic in the 46 year old competition that is in its 23rd edition, the Flying Eagles had faced Brazil five times and had won none of the confrontations.
The best results Nigeria got in matches with Brazil are the goalless draw in 2005 and the 1-1 draw of 2013.
The most astonishing of Nigeria’s three losses to Brazil was the 4-0 crash-landing at Chile ‘87 when an assumed heavily loaded Nigerian side lost 4-0.
That had been preceded by the 3-0 loss at Mexico ‘83 and and 2-0 at Soviet Union ‘85 at the semi-finals.
They met Italy once in 1987 but lost the encounter 2-0.
FIFA U-20 World Cup draw in full
Argentina, Uzbekistan, Guatemala, New Zealand
USA, Ecuador, Fiji, Slovakia
Senegal, Japan, Israel, Colombia
Italy, Brazil, Nigeria, Dominican Republic
Uruguay, Iraq, England, Tunisia
France, Korea Republic, The Gambia, Honduras