The best, worst minutes for Nigeria’s Super Eagles at World Cups

USA 1994 Eagles
USA 1994 Eagles

Every brand and team have their best moments and also their worst moments. In sports, there are times when everything just goes for you – speculative shots end in the back of the net and the opponent’s goal-bound shot just careens off target by a nick.

The Super Eagles have had great moments at the FIFA World Cup tournament since their first qualification in 1994 and have scored 20 goals across their five participations in the FIFA World Cup – 1994, 1998, 2002, 2010, and 2014.

When Bulgaria scored against the Eagles in their first ever match at the World Cup in 1994, it was adjudged to be an offside – a decision that allowed the team to settle and get its acts together.

And in the second round with just three minutes on the clock, Sunday Oliseh failed to win a soft tackle and Roberto Baggio struck. There are more moments like this but we call this the best and worst minutes of the Eagles’ participation in the five World Cups they have attended.

The best scoring side was the class of 1994, who came within three minutes of dumping Italy out and making the quarterfinal. That squad featured the legendary Rashidi Yekini, who scored Nigeria’s first ever goal at the Mundial.

Eagles’ goal scoring time graph

MinutesFrequency      
1 - 1024th8th
11 - 20311th12th16th
21-30621st25th26th27th27th29th
31-400
41-50343rd45th47th
51-60155th
61-70169th
71-80373rd77th78th
81-90190th

The Eagles have failed to score in five matches of which two were drawn and three lost. The best times to score for the Eagles, statistically, have been the minutes between the 21-30 ranges. They scored six times during this period across the five tournaments. And the worst time for the Eagles is the 31-40 minute ranges, where they are yet to score in five appearances.

The Eagles have also conceded the most between the 41st and 50th minutes.

Eagles’ goals concession time graph

Minutes Frequency     
1 - 1041st3rd3rd6th
11 - 20112th
21-30321st21st28th
31-40235th38th
41-50544th46th47th49th50th
51-60258th58th
61-70263rd63rd
71-80371st76th79th
81-90386th88th90th
Extra time1102nd

These are all the minutes the Eagles have scored in their five World Cups

1994 – 7 Goals

1. Bulgaria – June 21, 1994 – Rashidi Yekini – 21st, Daniel Amokachi – 43rd, Emmanuel Amuneke – 55th minutes

2. Argentina – June 25, 1994 – Samson Siasia – 8th minute

3. Greece – June 30, 1994 – Finidi George – 45th, Daniel Amokachi – 90th minutes

4. Italy – July 5, 1994 – Emmanuel Amuneke – 27th minute

1998 – 6 Goals

5. Spain – June 13, 1998 – Mutiu Adepoju – 25th; Garba Lawal – 73rd; Sunday Oliseh – 78th minutes

6. Bulgaria – June 19, 1998 – Victor Ikpeba – 26th minute

7. Paraguay – June 24, 1998 – Wilson Oruma – 11th minute

8. Denmark – June 28, 1998 – Tijani Babangide – 77th minute

2002 – 1 Goal

9. Argentina – June 2, 2002 – No Goal scored

10. Sweden – June 7, 2002 – Julius Aghahowa – 27th minute

11. England – June 12 – 0

2010 – 3 Goals

12. Argentina – June 12, 2010 – No Goal scored

13. Greece – June 17, 2010 – Kalu Uche – 16th minute

14. South Korea – June 22, 2010 – Kalu Uche – 12th; Yakubu Aiyegbeni – 69th minutes

2014 – 3 Goals

15. Iran – June 16 – No Goal scored

16. Bosnia – June 21 – Osaze Odemwingie – 29th minute

17. Argentina – June 25, 2014 – Ahmed Musa – 4th & 47th minutes

18. France – June 30 – No Goal scored

These are all the minutes the Eagles have conceded in their 5 World Cups

1994 – 4 Goals

1. Argentina – June 25, 1994 – Claudio Cannigia – 21st and 28th minutes

2. Italy – July 5, 1994 – Roberto Baggio – 88th and 102nd minutes [Penalty]

1998 – 9 Goals

3. Spain – June 13, 1998 – Fernando Hierro – 21st, Raul – 47th minutes

4. Paraguay – June 24, 1998 – Celso Ayala – 1st, Miguel Benitez – 58th, Jose Cardozo – 86th minutes

5. Denmark – June 28, 1998 – Peter Moller – 3rd, Brian Laudrup – 12th, Ebbe Sand – 58th, Thomas Helveg – 76th minutes

2002 – 3 Goals

6. Argentina – June 2, 2002 – Gabriel Batistuta – 63rd minute

7. Sweden – June 7, 2002 – Henrik Larsson – 35th, 63rd minutes [Penalty]

2010 – 5 Goals

8. Argentina – June 12, 2010 – Gabriel Heinze – 6th minute

Greece – June 17, 2010 – Dimitrios Salpingidis – 44th, Vasileios Torosidis – 71st minutes

9. South Korea – June 22, 2010 – Lee Jung Soo – 38th, Park Chuyoung – 49th minutes

2014 – 5 Goals

10. Argentina – June 25, 2014 – Lionel Messi – 3rd & 46th; Marcos Rojo – 50th minutes

11. France – June 30 – Paul Pogba – 79th, Own Goal [Joseph Yobo] – 90th minutes


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