Nigeria’s youth national team, Flying Eagles will have to be up and doing in the second leg of their Africa U-20 Nations Cup qualifier against Guinea Bissau, as the West African neighbors’ coach has vowed that his side will escape with victory in Calabar.
Though both asides battled to a 2-2 draw during the first leg on Saturday, Guinea Bissau pulled off a remarkable comeback from two-goals down to eke out the shared points, such that Emeliano Te is enthusiastic of victory for his side in The Canaan City.
Nigeria started the game the better side and it wasn’t long before they raced into a two-zero lead, courtesy of a delightful brace from Enyimba of Aba forward, Wasiu Alalade.
Alalade put Nigeria ahead in the 15th minute before adding another in the 35th minute to give the Nigerian side a 2-0 lead as both teams head into the dressing room.
Guinea Bissau emerged from the break a changed side and thanks to some questionable officiating pulled a goal back in the 55th minute before drawing level ten minutes after their first goal.
The Flying Eagles, though, were frustrated by the officiating with as many as six of them getting booked for offences which ordinarily shouldn’t have earned them a yellow.
Few minutes to the end of the game, the Nigerians almost steal an away win but Peter Eneji, one of the seven players booked failed to make the most contact with the ball during a goal mouth scramble.
The return leg will come up in two weeks time at UJ Eusene Stadium in Calabar, capital of Cross River State following a confirmation by Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).
Ahead of that game, Guinea Bissau’s coach, Emeliano Te has promised his team will put up a big fight when they take on the Flying Eagles in Calabar for a place in the next round of the 2019 U20 AFCON qualifying series.
Té said after the home draw that for the second leg in Nigeria, his team will give everything to showcase the football played by the West African country.
He also recalled that the ‘Djurtians’ will face other factors like supporters in another stadium, stressing his team will have to be intelligent in approaching a game on foreign land.
Té complained about the time of the game that he did not think was favourable to his players and so the Nigerian dominance in the first half.
Guinea Bissau’s goal were scored by Man of the Match Mada Alberto Pereira, who features for the youth team of Portuguese club Desportivo das Aves, in the 53rd and 62nd minutes.
The opening stage of the match was dominated by the Nigerians, who opened the scoring in the 28th minute through Wasiu Alalade, who also extended the visitors’ lead in the 34th minute.
However, Mada reduced the lead with a beautiful free kick after 53 minutes as the home team dominated a great part of the second half.
The overall winners of this tie will battle winners of the match between Guinea and Mauritania next month for a place at Niger 2019.