U-20 AFCON: Nigeria’s Flying Eagles Beat Uganda To Clinch World Cup Ticket

The Flying Eagles of Nigeria have booked their place at this year’s U-20 World Cup after a hard-fought 1-0 win over their Uganda counterparts in Thursday’s quarter-final clash. The FIFA U-20 World Cup is scheduled to hold in Indonesia later this year.

A first-half own goal by Uganda’s Ibrahim Juma in the 30th minute proved to be the difference as Ladan Bosso’s boys held on to the slim advantage until the final whistle.

The match played at the 22,000-capacity Suez Canal Authority Stadium in Ismailia started on a cautious note as both teams tried to nullify the attacking threats of each other.

The Flying Eagles almost opened scoring in the 3rd minute through Ibrahim Muhammad but his left-footed shot took a deflection and went just wide of the Ugandan goal.

In the 7th minute of the game, Flying Eagles goalkeeper Chijioke Aniagboso spilled a long-range shot but was able to quickly claim the rebound before a Ugandan player got to it.

Uganda’s first threat on the Nigerian goal came in the 10th minute through Ivan Irinimbabazi but his point-blank header from a corner was superbly stopped by Aniagboso.

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The Flying Eagles got their first shot on target in the 12th minute from a free-kick but the attempt was firmly gathered by the Ugandan keeper.

In the 22nd minute of the encounter, Flying Eagles Ayuba Abubakar took a low shot which took a deflection before rolling into the waiting arms of the Ugandan shot-stopper.

The stalemate was eventually broken in the 30th minute when Ug anda’s keeper Juma, unfortunately, scored an own goal after Ibrahim Muhammad’s thunderous shot hit the post and the ball deflected off Juma to give the Flying Eagles a precious lead.


The Flying Eagles pressed on for a second goal and with five minutes left to play in the first half, Rilwanu Sarki sent in a dangerous cross which was cleared away for a corner.

The second half resumed and in the 48th minute, Rilwanu Sarki could have doubled the Flying Eagles’ lead, after the Uganda keeper failed to properly hold a cross but his effort was frantically cleared off the line.

In the 55th minute Uganda captain, Isma Mugulusi tried a shot from outside the box which went off target. Uganda almost drew level in the 60th minute but Aniagboso was able to stop Mugulusi’s close-range effort.

As the match wore on, the Ugandan pressure on the Flying Eagles became more intense as Aniagboso was called into action again in the 67th minute as he stopped a shot on target.

In the 87th minute, the Flying Eagles won a free-kick in a promising area but the effort missed the target by whiskers. The Flying Eagles of Nigeria were able to hold on to their lead till the referee sounded the final whistle.

The win and World Cup qualification will come as a huge relief for both the players and coaching staff after the backlash that followed their opening group match loss to Senegal. The Flying Eagles are chasing a record-extending eighth African title.

The Flying Eagles will now wait for the winner of the quarter-final clash between South Sudan and Gambia. The U-20 World Cup is scheduled to hold in Indonesia from May 20 to June 12, 2023.

The Junior Teranga Lions are also through to the Cadet World Cup after a narrow 1-0 victory over the Junior Squirrels of Benin Republic.


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