The Super Eagles advanced to the next round of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) on Monday in Abidjan with a 1-0 win over Guinea-Bissau.
The result meant Nigeria finished second, after group leaders Equatorial Guinea held firmly to Group A top spot after a 4-0 annihilation of hosts Côte d’Ivoire.
In their match played at the Stade Felix Houphouet Boigny in Abidjan, the Super Eagles did raise their game with the hopes of a resounding win.
AFCON 2023: Equatorial Guinea stun hosts Cote d’Ivoire in 4-0 win
But they were largely held back by their opponents who knew they had nothing to lose, but could serve as spoilers.
With the Super Eagles suffering a few injuries and some key players rested, they struggled to keep this up, and were rather on the back foot mostly.
Needing to win to keep their position and advance, Nigeria kept up holding on to the game and deservedly got rewarded in the 37th minute through an own goal.
A Simon Moses pullout from the left flank had put the Guinea-Bissau defence on the edge.
With Victor Osimhen advancing into the goal area, Opa Sangante miserably bundled the ball past his goalkeeper into the net for the match’s lone goal.
reports that the result made it two wins and one draw for seven points from three matches for Nigeria to finish second.
They will now meet the Group C runners-up in the second round.
Meanwhile, Equatorial Guinea
beat hosts Côte d’Ivoire 4-0 to win Group A, advancing into the second round ahead of Nigeria.
Cote d’Ivoire can still join the two from the group in the round of 16, depending on the results from other groups.
Group A Final Standings
Team P W D L GF GA GD Pts
Equatorial Guinea 3 2 1 0 9 3 +6 7
Nigeria 3 2 1 0 3 1 +2 7
Côte d’Ivoire 3 1 0 2 2 5 -3 3
Guinea-Bissau 3 0 0 3 2 7 -5 0