Nigeria will renew their rivalry with the Albiceleste of Argentina when their national U20 sides face off in the Round of 16 of the ongoing FIFA U20 World Cup.
The encounter is slated for the Estadio San Juan del Bicentenario on Wednesday night.
Finishing third in Group D, the Flying Eagles opened their tournament with a 2-1 win over Dominican Republic, before beating Italy 2-0, but a defeat to Brazil in the final group game saw lose their position at the top of the group to the South Americans. They had to settle for a Best Loser qualification ticket in 3rd place.
In contrast, hosts Argentina capped up their quite impressive group stage campaign with a 5-0 victory over New Zealand on matchday three to keep their 100% start. The win secured them top spot in Group A, having beaten Uzbekistan and Guatemala in their first two group games.
After having their flight from Buenos Aires delayed for about nine hours, Nigeria players and officials finally settled in at San Juan — venue of the knockout game with Argentina — on Tuesday afternoon.
HEAD TO HEAD
Both teams have only faced-off once in the past, and it was at the final of the 2005 edition of the competition in Netherlands. The South Americans defeated Nigeria 2-1 to clinch the title in that game, all thanks to a sensational Lionel Messi brace.
It should be noted that Argentina are the most successful nation at the FIFA U20 World Cup with six titles to their name, while the Africans have only managed to reach the final twice (1989 & 2005) but have never won it.
DATE, TIME AND VENUE:
May 31st, 2023
10:00pm (West African Time)
Estadio San Juan del Bicentenario
WHERE TO WATCH
Supersport Football (GOtv or DSTV)