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Nigeria secured a vital win in the reverse fixtures of a 2024 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier at the Estadio Nacional 24 de Setembro in Bissau on Monday.

The coach Jose Peseiro led Super Eagles had suffered a shock loss to the Djurtus last Friday in Abuja but bounced back to jubilation in the 30th minute with a goal from the penalty spot by Simon Moses to earn 1-0 at the final whistle by the Moroccan referee.

The Portuguese tactician who has been criticised for a poor string of results prior to the first leg match and especially the defeat last Friday, obviously fought hard knowing his team has to win. On the verge for a better result, he made five changes to his starting line up with central defender Kenneth Omeruo paired with Semi Ajayi in the right full back. Frank Onyeka returned to the midfield while Simon Moses started from the left side and Teremi Moffi joined the attack.

The early incursions in the game came from Nigeria after the kick- off, the pressure led to two corner kicks. The improved effort also saw the Super Eagles defenders joining the midfield for cohesive play which led to a throw which resulted in Guinea- Bissau goal keeper Jonas Mendes into a scrambling save.

The home side responded with a clear opportunity for goal but went off the bar after Frank Onyeka had lost the ball close to the box. Alex Iwobi combining with Frank Onyeka essentially worked in midfield to contain the pressure from the Djurtus which in the seventh minute Moffi’s shot was blocked for a corner.

The Super Eagles continued the pressure with the powered ball into the Guinea-Bissau box, this led to Osayi Samuel being brought down by Fali Cande for the Moroccan referee to call for a penalty. Jonas Mendes, who looked prepared was sent to the wrong corner by Simon Moses to score from the penalty spot.The Nigeria team sustained the lead for half time.

On return to the second half Alfa Semedo who ballooned an opportunity in the first half pressured to score a goal but the Eagles defense playing slightly better organised than their first the leg match was able to check the Djurtus forward.

Nigeria’s coach Peseiro realising the urgency from the Djurtus, marshalled from the sideline which observably the Super Eagles tactically slowed down the pace of the play after Uzoho had almost given the home team an opportunity for equalizer. The resultant Dacio almost found the net but had a scramble clearance.

Substitute Joe Aribo was introduced to pair Victor Osimhen in the forward, his effort in the 70th minute almost got Nigeria a second goal. Victor Osimhen got closer to scoring too but his shot did hit the right goal post.

The Eagles sustained the lead to the final whistle after the four minutes added time to secure a vital win. With the result Nigeria lead Group A with nine points. Guinea- Bissau is second with seven points, third is occupied by Sierra Leone with five points. While Sao Tome & Principe sit at the bottom of the group with just one point. The Super Eagles next match is away against Sierra Leone in June.

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