The Flying Eagles of Nigeria claimed an emphatic 2-0 win over Italy to punch their ticket to the Round of 16 at the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup.

The Nigeria boys, on Wednesday night, stunned the Gli Azzurrini in the matchday two encounter to make it two wins in two and claim top spot in Group D.

Both sides had chances to get ahead before the break but struggled to find the back of the net. Luckily for the Eagles, the Italians had a penalty call dismissed by VAR as the ball was adjudged to have hit the attacking player’s arm first before the spotted foul.

Nigeria took the lead on 61 minutes through a great header from Salim Fago Lawal, following a beautifully worked cross from Umeh Emmanuel.

Italy mounted pressure later on as they sought an equaliser but the Flying Eagles kept looking dangerous on the break. The West Africans then got to double their lead in stoppage time when Jude Sunday slotted in a fine shot, courtesy of a stunning assist from goalkeeper Chijioke Aniagboso, to seal Nigeria’s victory.

The win gets Nigeria to six points, enough to – at the very least – earn them a best loser spot in the Round of 16.

Nigeria will square up with Brazil in their final group game on Saturday and seek to finish at the group’s top spot ahead pairing for the knockouts round.


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