Nigeria maintain excellent progress
Nigeria are through to the semi-finals at the FIFA U-17 World
Cup Korea 2007 after defeating Argentina 2-0 at the Cheonan Sports
Complex on Sunday 2 September. The Africans now meet Germany or
England for a place in the Final.
Argentina had the best of the early exchanges in a closely-fought and occasionally physical first half. Nigeria keeper Oladele Ajiboye saved Alexis Machuca's driven free-kick from over 30 yards, before Santiago Fernandez fired over the bar from the edge of the box ten minutes later. But the tables were turned on 33 minutes when the Africans took the lead after captain Lukman Haruna went down in the penalty area under a challenge from Fernando Meza.
Haruna picked himself up and dispatched the spot-kick to hand
the Golden Eaglets the lead. Then on the stroke of half-time a
glorious exchange of passes on the left sent Macauley Chrisantus
clear in front of goal, the striker making no mistake to double his
side's advantage and take his personal tally for the tournament
The Africans had the better of the chances after the restart, Matthew Edile coming within a whisker of increasing the lead with a low drive. Argentina introduced a fresh striker in the shape of Carlos Benitez and the gamble looked set to bear fruit, but Maximiliano Oliva missed a good opening and Ajiboye beat out Eduardo Salvio's long-range effort. The final clear-cut chance fell to Nigeria, but Kabiru Akinsola's shot ended in the side-netting and the margin of victory remained at 2-0.