Super eagles reach AFCON Bus stop..lose to Algeria 2:1
The Journey for the Super Eagles as far as winning the 2019 AFrican Cup of Nations is over. Last night we were beaten by a really Good Algerian side who matched the Eagles for Skill, Strength and resilience.
Both teams are traditionally strong in the AFCON so there was no minnow..Djamel Belmadi had said before hand that the game with Nigeria was the Final as far as they were concerned because Nigeria is a strong team and was the only Team he sensed his Boys were Afraid of.
Gernot Rohr had said pregame that he would be mindful of the counter attacks of the Algerians and will ask his Full backs to stay back and pick their moments.
The game began with the Algerians showing their intentions early..launching swift attack with the Super Eagles struggling to find any kind of Rhythm. The Algerians pressed the Super Eagles high because with every possession they had..an Algerian was right behind him. The Eagles are skillful and good on the ball so they were able to evade the press with individual skill. The Defence of the West Africans were still under pressure and when Mahrez got the ball on the right with Jamiu Collins 1 on 1 ..Keen watchers knew there was danger. He teased the defender and crossed, unfortunately the ball hit Ekong and Went in..1-0 for the Algerians on the 40th minute mark. The Super Eagles looked rattled as the Algerians looked assured in their ways and seemed the better side Tactically.
The Half ended 1-0, and definitely the Algerian were the better side clearly. 2nd half, just like they did against Cameroon SuperEagles came out stronger and pegged the North Africans back.
Right on Cue, the Super Eagles got their Equalizer after a shot by Etebo was handled by a defender and after not been initially spotted by the referee VAR was consulted and the Penalty was given. 70th Minute Odion Ighalo stepped up & finished..1-1.
At this point the Momentum seemed in the hands of the Super Eagles. They attacked for the 2nd goal which would put them ahead but found the Algerian Back line very difficult to break down.
As the minutes ticked by the Super Eagles has one eye on the Extra time but the Algerians didnt want that upped the tempo..The Super eagles were looking sloppy..Bennacer should have won it when his ferocious left foot drive hit the cross bar..with the Super Eagles struggling to clear their lines..Ndidi fouled bennacer right outside the box with 3mins + out of the 4 announced as time added on.
Up stepped Riyadh Mahrez to curl in a wonderful freekick into the Top right hand corner. 2-1 game, set , Match.
The kick was literally the last of the game and the refreee’s whistle blew..
The Super Eagles will now play Tunisia for the 3rd place medal.