Four-star Stankovic haunts Nigeria
© Getty Images

After falling to Brazil yesterday, African champions Nigeria needed all they could get today. Suffice it to say, it did not start well. It took just seconds for the Swiss to take the lead and goals followed in quick succession from Dejan Stankovic and captain Mo Jaeggy.

Ariyo’s direct-kick sailed out of the stadium at the other end, and moments later Stankovic showed him how it is done, albeit from a more advantageous position. Another from Jaeggy heaped more misery on the men in green with just six minutes gone.

There were bright spots for Nigeria in the second period when Isiaka Olawale and Azeez Abu struck from close range, but there was little else for their fans to cheer about, as the acrobatic Stankovic had also added a couple more for the Swiss.

It was a back-and-forth battle in the final period, as both sides worked hard until time expired. The Swiss could afford to be patient on the ball, but were wise not to relax entirely against the African champions, who came close on several occasions. But at the end of the day, it was the Swiss who proved to be much too much of a handful.

Nigeria will close out the group stage tomorrow by facing Bahrain, while Switzerland’s fine form of late could cause trouble for defending champions Brazil.