Oghenekaro Etebo netted four goals and Sadiq Umar was outstanding as late comers Nigeria edged past Japan 5-4 in a Rio Olympics Group B...
Oghenekaro Etebo netted four goals and Sadiq Umar was outstanding as late comers Nigeria edged past Japan 5-4 in a Rio Olympics Group B match in Manaus Friday morning.
The opening match of this group had finished in a 2-2 draw between Sweden and Colombia and the Nigeria vs Japan clash was highlighted by an electric start with as many as four goals within as many minutes in the first 14 minutes of action.
On Sunday in Manaus, Nigeria take on Sweden and Colombia battle Japan.
In the seventh minute, surprise starter Sadiq Umar gave Dream Team VI a great start especially after the well documented hassles they encountered getting to Brazil from their training base in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.
AS Roma striker Umar coolly slid home a rebound after the goalkeeper could not hold on to a shot by Imoh Ezekiel from the right.
However, a minute later, Japan drew level when they scored from the penalty spot after Stanley Amuzie fouled inside his box.
But moments later, Man-of-the-match Oghenekaro Etebo regained the lead for Nigeria when he neatly controlled a long ball from the right before he finished off superbly.
Japan made it 2-2 almost immediately when they caught the Nigeria defence napping and Takumi Naminamo slotted beneath the diving Emmanuel Daniel.
Etebo then got his brace when he fired home off an assist by the lively Sadiq Umar with three minutes to half time. There will be four more goals in the second half.
Like it was at the beginning of the first half, Sadiq Umar propelled Nigeria to go ahead six minutes after the break when he was brought down inside the box and Etebo scored his hat-trick from the penalty spot.
And in the 66th minute, the Portugal-based midfielder netted his fourth goal when he fired home from outside the box after the Japan goalkeeper’s poor clearance from a dangerous Mikel ball into the box.
However, to their credit Japan did not give up as they kept piling on the pressure against their now tired opponents. They pulled a goal back through Arsenal new signing Takuma Asano, who finished off superbly on 70 minutes
And in stoppage time, another substitute Musashi Suzuki curled his shot from inside the box beyond the Nigeria goalkeeper to add more respectability to the scoreline.
Watch goals below
Watch goals below
Nigeria 5 - 4 Japan Highlights (2016 Rio Olympics) pic.twitter.com/kjOI7o3k90— O (@Okwuchiii) August 5, 2016