Nigeria’s cadet national team, Golden Eaglets have made a promise to go all out for redemption, as they prepare to play their next game at the FIFA U-17 World Cup on Tuesday, following their qualification for the round of 16, despite losing 2-1 to Australia in Brasilia.
Megasportsarena.com reports that Australia’s top scorer, Noah Botic was the hero for the teenagers from Down Under, as he stuck twice to punish the largely wasteful, over exuberant and error prone Eaglets’ quad, who ironically remain on course for a sixth global title.
Botic finished off a counter-attack in the 13th minute to opening scoring against the run of play in Friday’s last group game at Estadio Bezerrao before Peter Olawale equalized for Nigeria seven minutes later, making his first appearance in the competition count with a brilliant turnaround shot from just outside the box.
Botic then converted from the spot in the 54th minute when Caleb Watts made a promising run into Nigeria’s area and was brought down by Usman Ibrahim in the 18-yard box, which left the referee with no choice but to point at the penalty kick.
Manu Garba’s side paid dearly for their missed chances in the game, making 35 attempts at goal and converting just one of their 12 shots on target but the five-time champions, who won their first two games top the group with six points, while
Ecuador beat Hungary to stay second on goals difference.
Australia are third on four points, and they are in good stead to reach the knockout stage as one of the best losers for the round of 16 slots, in which the Eaglets will be looking to avoid a repeat of Friday’s defeat when they play their next game on November 5.
The scorer of Nigeria’s goal in their last group game, Peter Olawale blamed bad luck for their loss to Australia, but vowed that they will bounce back in the round of 16 and promised that the team will put an improved performance in their next game.
Olawale retorted: “I scored, but it was not enough. We fought hard to equalise the second goal against us by Australia, but we were not so lucky. We’re sorry for the loss and I promise that by the next game we will make Nigerians happy and proud again. We hope to make the most of our chances in the next game to make Nigerians happy again.”