Nigeria’s Sand Eagles through to semi-final

Two-time CAF Beach Soccer Africa Cup of Nations winners Nigeria’s Super Sand Eagles have qualified for the semi-finals of the ongoing Beach Soccer Africa Cup of Nations after beating Ghana 4-3 on Thursday night at Eko Atlantic Beach, Lagos.

The Audu Adamu tutored side needing a win, in extra-time or normal-time, as they threw away their initial lead in a contest that saw the opening four goals come in the space of two third-period minutes.

Having battled back to lead going into the final three minutes, Nigeria were again hauled level before Victor Tale struck the winner a minute from time to take the Super Sand Eagles into the final four and one win away from next year’s FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup.

In an end-to-end opening period, Nigeria were largely on top as they sought to tie up their spot in the semi-finals, although goalkeeper Adeji in the Ghana goal proved up to the task early on.

At the other end, Ayalogu pulled off a wonderful double save to keep the score level before Abu struck the Ghanian upright.

With the goalkeepers impressing ahead of their outfield colleagues, the sides went into the final frame goalless amid high tension in Lagos.

The breakthrough eventually came when Emeka side footed a volley into the top corner, although the wild scenes in the stands at Eko Atlantic City were short lived as Husseini also found the roof of the net shortly after.

Ghanaian forward Adjei completed the turnaround when he swivelled and shot low past Ayalogu but Emeka levelled for Nigeria as the game came to life.

Ogodo’s penalty briefly put Nigeria back in front and, after Osa levelled from the restart, Tale collected Abu’s pass to rifle the winner home with less than two minutes left on the clock.

CAF Beach Soccer Africa Cup of Nations 2016

Match results
Thursday, 15th December 2016
16.15 – Libya 2-10 Senegal
17.30 – Egypt 4-2 Ivory Coast
18.45 – Madagascar 1-2 Morocco
20.00 – Nigeria 4-3 Ghana

Saturday, 17th December 2016
16.15 – Libya v Ivory Coast
17.30 – Madagascar v Ghana
18.45 – Senegal v Egypt
20.00 – Morocco v Nigeria

 

Aisha JM