2018 woldcupSuper Eagles beat the Sihlangu Semnikati of Swaziland 2-0 at the Adokiye Amiesiamaka stadium, Port Harcourt on Tuesday to reach the group stage of the 2018 FIFA World Cup CAF qualifying series.

Second half goals from Moses Simon and Efe Ambrose were all that the Sunday Oliseh-led Eagles required to send their Southern African opponent packing.

The Eagles who had started the match on a bright note, had several scoring opportunities but couldn’t find the target in the first half, with Watford FC of England Striker, Odion Ighalo guilty of squandering the best opportunity.

With the Swazis growing in confidence following their brave first half display, the Eagles came into the second half much stronger and took the game to their opponent.

The Eagles eventually found breakthrough when Belgium based Moses Simon curled a sublime free kick on the edge of the box into the heavily guarded Swaziland net.

The game was looking likely to end 1-0 in favour of the Super Eagles before Efe Ambrose who plies his trade with Celtic FC of Scotland tapped in a second goal in the 85th minute to send the Nigerian supporters into jubilation.

Nigeria and Swaziland played out a goalless draw in the first leg in Lobamba, thus making the return leg a must-win for the Eagles. And Oliseh admitted that the Swazis proved that there are no minnows in African football.

“For a fact, Swaziland’s FIFA ranking is unfair to them. They played with their hearts over the two legs and made things pretty difficult for us,” Oliseh said in his post-match speech .

The triumph over the resilience Swazis ensures that the Super Eagles will be one of the 20 teams in the group phase of the African series for the 2018 FIFA World Cup, which begins in October 2016.

By Olisemeka Obeche

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