Clean sweep for Nigeria
© Foto-net

Nigeria completed the action in Group D of the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Rio de Janeiro with their third consecutive win, squeezing past UAE 1-0 on penalties after a high-octane 6-6 draw in normal time.

Even though top spot in the section was already theirs, the Nigerians were quickly out of the blocks, racing into a 4-0 lead midway through the opening period. Remarkably, though, the Middle Easterners, led by skipper Bakhit Alabadla, hit back with a three-goal blitz of their own to cut the deficit to one by the first interval.

Starved of possession as the game wore on, Nigeria nevertheless stretched further ahead when Isiaka Olawale completed his hat trick. Not to be denied, the Asian outfit were rewarded for their insistence when Alabadla struck again and Ali Karim added another to tie the scores at 5-5.

The action continued unabated in the final period, the Africans nosing in front once more through Suleman Usman only for a spectacular Haidar Bashir overhead kick to send the game into an extra period, which ended goalless. And in the resulting shootout Abdullhi Isa kept out Bashir's kick to allow Isiaka Olawale to seal another Beach Eagle triumph.