Nigeria progressed to the final of the African Nations Championship thanks to Gabriel Okechukwu’s 16th minute goal and the brilliance of substitute goalie, Dele Ajiboye in the 1-0 win against Sudan.
Nigeria lost first choice goalkeeper, Ikechukwu Ezenwa to an injury after just 12 minutes in the first half.
Four minutes later Gabriel latched on a flick on by Anthony Okpotu to run through on goal and fired the Eagles ahead for a first half lead.
Unfortunately for Salisu Yusuf’s they would play most of the second half with a man down after midfielder, Ifeanyi Ifeanyi was sent off for a second booking.
For 32 minutes Nigeria’s 10-men managed to keep the Sudan attackers at bay – but Sudan also had a man sent off.
On 87 minutes the numerical advantage for the Falcons of Jediane was struck off after defender Bakri Bashir was shown a straight red for tripping a goal-bound Dayo Ojo.
Ajiboye made 13 saves to keep hold of Nigeria’s lead in the match including a last gasp ti over save in the dying minutes of additional time towards the end of the game.
STATS | Check out the full-time stats! Which team had the better overall performance? #TotalCHAN2018 #SDNNGA pic.twitter.com/Ij61D0kOiP
— CAF (@CAF_Online) January 31, 2018
Nigeria next face Morocco – the host nation – on February 4, both making their first ever appearances in final.
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