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U-20 AFCON: Nigeria edges Burundi to reach final qualifying round

Nigeria’s Flying Eagles yesterday defeated their counterparts from Burundi 2-1 to qualify for an U-20 AFCON qualifying final playoff against Sudan next month on a…

Nigeria’s Flying Eagles yesterday defeated their counterparts from Burundi 2-1 to qualify for an U-20 AFCON qualifying final playoff against Sudan next month on a 3-1 aggregate.
The winners between Nigeria and Sudan will book a place at next year’s U-20 AFCON final tournament in Zambia.
Victor Osimhen scored from the penalty spot after 73 minutes to put the Flying Eagles in front after Samuel Chukwueze was fouled inside the box.
Skipper Kelechi Nwakali made it 2-0 in the 81stminute, when he drove home a free kick from 23 yards.
However, Burundi pulled a goal back a minute from full time when Ndikumana Magloire cashed in on laxity in the Flying Eagles defence to make hay.
Nigeria won the first leg 1-0 in Bujumbura last month.
The fans at the UJ Esuene Stadium in the coastal town of Calabar were entertained by the passing game of the Flying Eagles, who though struggled to put the ball in the back of the net.
The home team enjoyed the better chances to go in front in this qualifier.
As early as the third minute, Tunisia-based defender Zakari missed an open goal and four minutes later, Osimhen’s effort was cleared off the goal line.
The Flying Eagles continued to pile on the pressure in search of a goal and in the 31stminute match winner in the first encounter Chukwudi Agor thought he had finally broken the deadlock, but the referee cancelled the effort for offside.
The Burundi goalkeeper Moussa Omar then pulled off a big save in the 38th minute, when he kept out a shot from the edge of the box.
And minutes later, skipper Kelechi Nwakali’s rocket misses narrowly.
The misses continued in the second half with Zakari’s header missing by the whisker on 59 minutes
However, late goals by Osimhen and Nwakali were enough to turn back Burundi and set up a clash with Sudan on July 8.

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