Five-star Nigeria spoil Guatemala's debut
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Nigeria cruised to the largest-margin of victory at this tournament, thrashing debutants Guatemala 5-0 in Armenia to begin their Group D campaign with a vital three points. Two first-half strikes from Edafe Egbedi, and another three added by Ajagun, Kayode, and Musa in the second put the match well out of reach for the Central Americans.

The Africans came out looking to convince, assuming control through VVV-Venlo winger Ahmed Musa. The No7 troubled the Guatemalans all match long, distributing fine crosses into the Nigeria’s double scorer Egbedi and Olarenwaju Kayode

It only took two minutes for the Nigerians to have their first crack at the Guatemalan goal, as Ramon Azeez fired a powerful shot over the crossbar. It was a telling sign of things to come, however, and Guatemalan goalkeeper Jose Garcia was forced into a diving save with Kayode encroaching on the dribble.

On eight minutes, Musa edged past Jose Andrade down the left flank and slotted back to Egbedi, who fired home from close-range. The Guatemalans were on the back foot from that point forward, and Garcia was breathing a sigh of relief when Nigeria had a goal disallowed on 22 minutes for offside.

However, Nigeria were still able to double their advantage before the break when Musa sent in a fine cross in which Egbedi easily guided into the back of the net. It could have been three five minutes later, but Kayode was again adjudged to be offside.

The day only got worse for the Los Chapines, despite a better showing in the second half from Ever Almeida’s men. Nigeria found the net once again right out the gate, when Abdul Ajagun hit a Kayode cross first-time past Garcia. And becoming more and more ruthless, the Africans found a fourth. Kayode turned from provider to scorer on 52 minutes, when he nodded home an Emmanuel Anyanwu cross with little challenge from the Guatemalan defence.

Walter Arriola sent a chance sailing over the crossbar, before Nigeria playmaker Musa hammered a crosswise shot past the sprawling Garcia.

Nigeria will have plenty of confidence to take into their next match on 3 August against Croatia, while Guatemala will have to regroup ahead their match with Saudi Arabia the same day.