Nigeria’s Under-17 national team, the Golden Eaglets continued its impressive performance at the ongoing FIFA U-17 World Cup with a comprehensive 5-1 spanking of host, Chile.
The victory over the host in the second Group A game played on Wednesday morning, (Nigerian time) at the Estadio Sausalito Vina Mar in Santiago secured second round qualification for the defending champions.
And it took the Eaglets barely 30 seconds to open the score sheet when Victor Osimhen muscled his way through and delivered an exquisite pass to Samuel Chukwueze to bury the ball.
Nigeria doubled the lead eleven minutes later when the impressive Chukwueze was bundled in the box and skipper Kelechi Nwakali scored from the resultant spot kick.
Although, Osimhen and Chukwueze tormented the Chilean defence and should have increased the tally before half time, they squandered the scoring opportunities.
However, shortly after the second half resumed, the Eaglets took the host to cleaners, with Chukwueze scoring the third goal for Nigeria with a crisp shot inside the Chilean box in the 61st minute.
The Nigeria team was awarded another spot kick in the 66th minute after the pacy Chukwueze was fouled in the box and Osimhen was on hand to make it 4-0.
Chile, however, pulled a goal back to give the scoreline a respectable look when skipper Allende scored on a half volley in the 81st minute. Nigeria’s victory looked threatened when substitute Funsho Bambgboye was given a red card for stepping on the toes of Chilean defender, Saavedra in the 84th minute.
However, that didn’t stop the Eaglets from adding to the scoreline as Victor Osimhen’s well placed header in the 86th minute made it 5-1 to seal the comprehensive victory.
Another opportunity to add a gloss to the feat and made it 6-1 was squandered by skipper Kelechi Nwakali, who ballooned Nigeria’s third penalty kick.
The Eaglets will now face Croatia in their final group game on Friday in what might just be a formality as they are already through as Group A winners after Croatia and United States played out a 2-2 draw.
By Olisemeka Obeche