Nigeria Beats South Africa To Zoom Into AFCON 2024 Final
After a tough match that ended on penalty shoot out, Nigeria’s Super Eagles advanced into the final of the Africa Cup of Nations 2024 (AFCON 2024).
The match ended 4-2 in favour of Nigeria over South Africa on Wednesday.
Captain William Troost-Ekong was the goalscorer from the penalty spot while Kelechi Iheanacho scored the winning penalty as goalkeeper Stanley Nwabali saved twice in the shoot-out to set Nigeria on the road to her eighth AFCON Final.
According to a report by Daily Trust, Osimhen was doubtful a day to the encounter but the striker recovered to lead the line expertly, while Bright Osayi-Samuel deputized for injured Zaidu Sanusi.
South Africa had more of the possession early on and fashioned the first real opportunity through Sphephelo Sithole who shot straight at Nwabali from distance following a mistake in defence, and the 27 years old saved again from Percy Tau.
The South Africans continued to probe but the Super Eagles had the next chance when Alex Iwobi also shot straight at Ronwen Williams before Evidence Makgopa drew a sprawling save from Nwabali who clawed a curler away from goal. Osimhen then headed wide from a corner kick as both sides went into the interval all square.
Nigeria came out with more purpose in the second half and Osimhen singlehandedly took on three defenders to win a penalty off Mvala’s mistimed tackle in the box. Coming up against Ronwen Williams who had saved four penalties in their quarter-final victory, Troost-Ekong stepped up to slot the ball onto the net for a 1-0 lead on 67 minutes. The Bafana Bafana almost provided an immediate response through Makgopa’s drilled shot that went inches wide of the far post.
Nigeria then created the two chances in first half extra-time with Lookman’s stinger headed for the far post and Osimhen’s bullet low shot both saved by Williams.