By Victor Okoye
The home-based Super Eagles rallied from a aim all the way down to defeat Angola and seal their place within the semi-finals of the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN) on Sunday.
Okechukwu Gabriel scored an extra-time winner as Nigeria sealed their place within the semi-finals of the 2018 CHAN with a 2-1 win over Angola on the Stade Ibn Batouta in Tangier, Morocco.
Vladimir Vá’s second-half aim swung the sport in Angola’s favour, however Anthony Okpotu levelled scores in stoppage-time earlier than Gabriel scored the winner within the 109th minute of the conflict.
As a outcome, Nigeria will tackle Sudan in Marrakech on Wednesday for a spot within the last.
Okpotu squandered a golden likelihood to place the Super Eagles in entrance inside the opening 20 seconds of the conflict.
But the ahead slipped on the important second with solely the goalkeeper to beat.
Having navigated by means of a relentless spell of strain, Palancas Negras threatened to make the CHAN Eagles rue their missed alternatives as they gained the upper-hand within the closing levels of the primary half.
Ikechukwu Ezenwa was spectacular all through in aim for Nigeria and the shot-stopper pulled off three nice saves to disclaim Calesso Manu inside the house of six pulsating minutes.
Okpotu, although, had one other likelihood to place Nigeria a aim up simply in need of the break, however Braulio Nary was properly positioned to clear off the road after Mavanga Landu misjudged a cross into the world.
The recreation continued to ebb and stream following the interval with each groups lacking additional probabilities earlier than Vladimiro Antonio’s opener within the 55th minute.
Timothy Danladi was unfortunate as his tried clearance cannoned off the Angolan midfielder and into the again of the online.
Nigeria surged ahead looking for the equalizer, however a spot within the last 4 threatened to slide from their attain as Gabriel squandered two gilt-edged probabilities in fast succession.
The ahead watched in agony as his header hit the woodwork, onto the Angolan goalkeeper’s head and away from hazard within the 77th minute.
Persistence lastly paid dividends for the Nigerians in stoppage time as Okpotu hammered residence from shut vary to ship the sport into extra-time.
Like Okpotu, Gabriel would additionally make amends as he struck residence what would show to be the winner within the second-half of added time.
The ahead weaved previous two Palancas Negras defenders earlier than firing residence a left-footed shot into the again of the online from the sting of the world to ship the Super Eagles followers into delirium, and Nigeria into the semis.