A 2-1 win over South Africa’s Bafana Bafana on Wednesday took Nigeria’s Super Eagles into the semi-finals of the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
Despite South Africa cancelling a Samuel Chukwueze’s 27th minute goal through a video assistant referee (VAR), Udinese’s William Troost-Ekong capitalised on a goalkeeping error by Ronwen Williams to clinch the winner for the Eagles.
The error was from a corner kick in the 89th minute.
The Bafana Bafana had pulled a shocker in the Round of 16 by beating seven-time champions and hosts Egypt going into Wednesday’s game.
Stuart Baxter’s charges, less fancied against their opponents, lived their underdogs tag after crumbling before the half-hour mark.
Villarreal’s left-back Chukwueze picked a pass from Arsenal midfielder Alex Iwobi and hit it twice in the goal area to beat goalkeeper Williams.
Though appearing to be jittery, the Supersport United goalkeeper kept the 1996 champions in the game after parrying Peter Etebo’s freekick onto the crossbar five minutes after the break.
South Africa nicked a hard-earned equaliser through Bongani Zungu in the 71st minute.
Moroccan referee Redouane Jiyed initially ruled it offside but was later aided by VAR to point to the centre circle.
But Nigeria jumped to the lead again on the nick of full-time after Troost-Ekong tapped in a cornerkick Williams failed to clear in the air.
The win sets up a semi-final clash between the three-time champions and the winner of the Algeria-Ivoiry Coast clash, which will be played on Thursday.
The semi-finals will be played on Sunday, July 14.
By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana