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Flying Eagles Beat Italy to Leave ‘Group of Death’ Precarious 

Flying Eagles Beat Italy to Leave ‘Group of Death’ Precarious 

Femi Solaja 

Nigeria’s Flying put out a brilliant show at the Mendoza Stadium last night as they defeated Italy 2-0 in their Group D second game of the FIFA U20 World Cup in Argentina.

The result puts  Ladan Bosso wards one foot in the knockout phase pending the result of the late fixture  between Brazil and the Dominican Republic.

The feat earned the Nigerian side two wins with maximum six points. They now needed just one point in their last match on Saturday against Brazil to top the group.

Should Flying Eagles fall to the Brazilians, the possibilities of all top three teams ending the group stage with six points is there. 

Yesterday’s match started with the young Azzuris dominating the possession as expected but the Flying Eagles kept it right, especially at the back and waited for  counterattack to do the damage.

The first half ended in a stalemate as the Nigeria side grew into the game, stamping their authority.

In the second half, the Flying Eagles put up a more impressive performance and it paid off in the 61st minute when Salim Fago Lawal’s flying header put the two- time finalists ahead.

The Italians tried to come back into the game but found the Nigerian backline hard to crack. Jude Sunday added the second in extra time to kill off whatever effort the Italians were putting up to share points.

In the last group matches on Saturday, should Italy beat the Dominican Republic and Nigeria lose to Brazil, all three teams will be tied on same six points only to be separated by goals difference. The third placed team in the group is very likely to pick one of the two extra slots meant for the best third teams in the group stage.

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