Flying Eagles World Cup Hopes Dashed As They Lose At Home To Sudan

Nigeria’s Under 20 national team, the Flying Eagles failed to qualify for the African u20 Nations Cup which serves as the Qualifiers for the U20 World Youth Championship after they lost 3-4 to the Young Falcons of Sudan, thereby going out on away goals rule after an aggregate score line of 5-5.

The Flying Eagles won the first leg away in Sudan by a 2-1 scoreline, and looked set to sail to victory when dazzling winger Samuel Chukwueze who was by far and wide the best player on the pitch dribbled three opponents and blasted a grounder past the outstretched hands of the Sudanese goalkeeper in the 17th minute. However, lackadaisical defending allowed the Sudanese an equaliser from a corner kick barely three minutes through Halid Abdamuleem.

Funsho Bamgboye shot Nigeria into the lead again but the Sudanese equalized just before half time.

After resumption of the second half, Coach Emmanuel Amunike who named eight players that started the 2015 Fifa U17 World Cup in Chile against Mali withdrew Gavin Thompson and threw in Orji Okonkwo but it was the visitors who struck first through Walladihh Musa but the visitors were soon reduced to 10 men when their Musa was sent off for a second bookable offense.

Substitute Orji Okonkwo restored parity for the Flying Eagles with a flying header after a pin point pullout from impressive right full back Ibe Tobechukwu but the visitors despite their numerical disadvantage kept pushing forward in search of the goal that would send them to the Nations Cup and eliminate the Flying Eagles.

They finally got the goal, in the 83rd minute when they were gifted another very soft goal from a right wing free kick as the entire Flying Eagles team were caught ball watching and allowed an unmarked Sudanese striker to jab the ball into the net past the hapless Akpan Udoh who had a nightmare game.