CHAN 2014: Nigeria books semi-final ticket in dramatic fashion


Morocco scored three goals in the first half.

Nigeria’s home based Super Eagles have qualified for the semi-final of the African Nations Championship, CHAN, after a 4-3 victory over Morocco.

A shambolic first half performance by the home based Eagles could have seen the team crash out of the competition being played in South Africa. However, the Coach Stephen Keshi tutored side played the game of their life to upturn a 3-0 deficit suffered in the first half.

The North Africans netted three goals inside seven minutes in the first half as they led the Eagles.

Moutouali got a brace for the Atlas Lions, scoring in the 33rd and 40th minute; while Lajour was on target in the 37th minute.

While many felt it was all over, the Eagles through Ugona Uzochukwu began what turned out to be a memorable comeback as he scored four minutes into the second half before Rabiu Ali reduced the deficit, scoring in the 56th minute.

Nigerian fans had their hearts till the 90th minute when Ejike Uzoenyi completed the comeback with a well taken strike.

Incidentally the Eagles could have wrapped up the game afterwards but Barnabas Imenger’s effort was inches over the bar, a situation that saw the thrilling quarter final duel stretch into extra time of 15minutes in each of two halves.

Nigeria started the better side in the extra time period but again failed to convert the early chances created.

The Eagles waited till the 111th minute before Aliyu Ibrahim scored what proved to be the winner and send Nigeria into the semi final. Nigeria has now scored 12 goals in the competition so far, the highest by any team.

The seven goals scored in the match is also the highest in any single match in the history of CHAN.

Read our live updates of the math below:
Update 1: 4:11pm
A scanty stadium here in Capetown but the Nigeria supporters club remain the loudest of the two countries cheering their teams.

Update 2: 4:17pm
Nigeria vs Morocco, 0-0 as Nigeria survives a Moroccan attack. 15 minutes played.

Update 3: 4:23pm
Nigeria misses a goal mouth scramble. 0-0 against Morocco. 23 minutes played. CAF President Isa Hayatou among the few guests at the stadium.

Update 4: 4:29pm
28′ played. Morocco misses a goal opportunity as short goes wide.

Update 5: 4:32pm
Moroccan fans bark at referee over a perceived wrong call of a push on Salami.

Update 6: 4:33pm
Morocco scores.

Update 7: 4:35pm
Nigeria trails Morocco 0-1. 35 minutes played.

Update 8: 4:37pm
Salami misses a goal scoring opportunity for Nigeria.

Update 9: 4:38pm
Morocco scores again through a free kick. Lead Nigeria 2-0.

Update 10: 4:39pm
Morocco lead Nigeria 2-0. 38 minutes played.

Update 11: 4:40pm
Morocco scores again 3-0.

Update 12: 4:41pm
Morocco score three goals in seven minutes to lead Nigeria 3-0.

Update 13: 4:47pm
First Half ends. Morocco leads Nigeria 3-0.

Update 14: 4:50pm
Nigeria had no shot on target in the first half, Morocco had three.

Nigeria had 6 shots at goal, Morocco had 8.

Nigeria had 45% ball possession, Morocco had 55%.

Update 15: 4:56pm
Morocco scored 3 goals in 7 minutes to lead Nigeria 3-0 at end of 1st half. The winner of the match proceeds to the semi-final of the competition.








Update 16: 5:00pm
Second Half starts.

Update 17: 5:03pm
Nigeria is yet to make a substitution in the game. 48 minutes played.

Update 18: 5:08pm
Nigeria scores. 3-1.

Update 19: 5:09pm
Imenger replaces Salami for Nigeria.

Update 20: 5:13pm
52 minutes played: Nigeria trails Morocco 1-3.

Update 21: 5:15pm
Nigeria scores again. Now trail Morocco 2-3.

Update 22: 5:16pm
Rabiu Ali scored his 3rd goal of the competition to put score at 2-3. 58 minutes played. Nigeria trails Morocco. Abderrahim replaces Fatah Said for Morocco.

Update 23; 5:19pm
Agbim makes a wonderful save to deny Morocco a fourth goal. Izuchukwu and Rabiu Ali are Nigeria’s goal scorers. Nigeria trails Morocco 2-3. 60 minutes played.

Update 24: 5:20pm
Abubacar Ibrahim replaces Ifeanyin Ede for Nigeria.

Update 24: 5:21pm
Correction: Uzochukwu and Rabiu Ali are Nigeria’s goal scorers as Nigeria misses another goal opportunity. Score is 2-3

Update 25: 5:25pm
Karroucchy gets a yellow card for a foul on a Nigerian player.

Update 26: 5:27pm
Nigeria’s Kunle Odunlami gets a yellow card for a foul on a Moroccan player.

Update 27: 5:28pm
Agbim saves a well taken Moroccan free kick.

Update 28 5:30pm
Nigeria’s Rabiu Ali gets a yellow card.

Update 29: 5:31pm
Brahim replaces Mohsin for Morocco.

Update 30 5:35pm
Brahim replaces Mohsin for Morocco. 78 minutes played so far.

Update 31: 5:43pm
86 minutes played. Nigeria misses a goal opportunity; trail Morocco 2-3.

Update 32: 5:45pm
A Moroccan player gets a yellow card for rough tackle.

Update 33: 5:47pm
Nigeria equalises. Uzoenyi 3-3.

Update 34: 5:49pm
Uzoenyi scores a wonderful goal to equalise for Nigeria. 3-3 against Morocco. 91 minutes played.

Update 35: 5:50pm
It’s full time. Nigeria 3, Morocco 3. Match goes to extra time.

Update 36: 5:52pm
30 minutes of extra time will be played. Should there still be no winner, the match will go to penalties.

Update 37: 5:54pm
While we await the commencement of extra-time, you should know that Nigeria has now scored 11 goals in CHAN2014; the highest so far in the competition.
Morocco scored all her 3 goals in the first half, Nigeria scored hers in the second half.

Update 38: 5:57pm
Extra time starts. Nigeria vs Morocco 3-3.

Update 39: 6:07pm
Rabiu Ali misses a free header. 100 minutes played. Nigeria 3- Morocco 3.

Update 40: 6:08pm
El Mobaraky replaces Rafik for Morocco.

Update 41: 6:11pm
Morocco misses a goal scoring opportunity.

Update 42: 6:13pm
Morocco’s Oulhaj gets a yellow card. First Half of Extra Time ends. Nigeria 3- Morocco 3

Update 43: 6:14 pm
Second Half Extra time starts.

Update 44: 6:18pm
108 minutes played: Shehu shoots wide for Nigeria.

Update 45: 6:20pm
Abubakar Ibrahim scores for Nigeria 4-3.

Update 46: 6:22pm
Nigeria makes her last substitution as Zango comes in.

Update 47: 628pm
Nigeria still playing better than Morocco and look more likely to score. Nigeria leads 4-3.

Update 48: 6:30pm
Three minutes injury time added.

Update 49: 6:33pm
Nigeria wins. Defeats Morocco 4-3.

Update 50: 6:40pm
Despite going three goals down in the first half, Nigeria defeats Morocco 4-3 after extra time.

Nigeria had 33 shots at goal and 16 on target; scoring 4.

Nigeria’s Ejike is Orange Man of the Match.


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  • Murtala

    2 Igbos and 2 Hausas won the game for us. You see we can live in peace if we understand and respect our differences.

    • Ken

      My friend, don’t bring that your parochial & ethnic whatever to this platform. We are talking football here, not politics. Don’t provoke some thoughts that are utterly unnecessary.

    • okwu

      So why is selfish salami on the headline?

      • Ken

        Salami that was substituted for lack of performance has his picture on the headline while the face of the club, Ejike Uzoenyi, who has won Orange man of the match for three consecutive times in the tournament is left out. When can we rise above this type of ethnic, parochial and corruption-ridden journalism? I am beginning to lose my respect for this medium.

    • Lanre

      Thank you Murtala for your apt observation. It has always been like this. Young lads struggling and working hard for self-fulfillment and for Team Nigeria. They also have a brilliant and intelligent coach, Stephen Keshi who is an experienced sportsman as well. Can Nigeria transpose this unto the political scene? Very doubtful. Where are the experienced political coaches and mentors? Is it Babangida who when he was asked to pass the ball to Abiola so he could score a goal, refused and scored against Nigeria? Is it Obasanjo? Who preferred to hold on to the ball so no one else will score and when he eventually passed the ball he made sure it was someone that could not score? Would Junaid Mohammed pass the ball to Edwin Clark? Would Asari Dokubo pass to Mohammed Buhari and vice versa? Your guess is as good as mine. In the meantime, let us continue to celebrate these young lads who have gone out there to represent their country with pride under the tutelage of an effective and responsible mentor and coach, Stephen Keshi.

      • redeem

        (President Jonathan has done it again for Nigeria-APC una fit go die–he gave us Junior world cup-african cup of nation after 18yrs–now this magical feat-who says God is not with him?)

        • frank

          Mumu redeem,does this put food on the table of d masses, stop corruption, stop boko haram, give electricity etc Please stop being sentimental. Even good leaders still win competition.

    • Bala R

      How can Nigeria move forward?
      With the President from Bayelsa.
      Vice president’s parent from Edo.
      Senate president and his vice Igbo.
      Secretary to FGN Igbo.

      • redeem

        (President Jonathan has done it again for Nigeria-APC una fit go die–he gave us Junior world cup-african cup of nation after 18yrs–now this magical feat-who says God is not with him?) unquote-
        My friend how old is Nigeria-are u saying Nigeria is 3 yrs old? This is how some of u with little or no brain keep on deceiving the masses-with your yeye regional brains-u are correct and acceptable to them if u are not from the SS-The fulani took control of government for 39 yrs–they had no Senate-House under any 419 speaker like tambuwal to control their expenditures–yet could not give us roads–water, health facilities and schools–its jonathan who is even building schools for almajris–54 yrs after our freedom and when he is talking some rogues whose zones are of no benefit to Nigeria, also want to make some unstable comments like el rufai did recently–not to talk of obj–people who would starve to death should we pull the rug under their feet-equally want to be identified as Naijas-compare his achievements in sports alone-to IBB Obj abacha–shagari and buhari–ride on Gej na God give u-

    • redeem

      stop deceiving yourself-for want of better things to do with the vast resources in your zone-instead u are busy killing innocent humans-in the Fulani North-in the name of religion–u may be talking about the peace of the grave yard–we were never meant to be together–never –its a forced amrriage-imposed on us by Lord Lugard-time for us to say good by to each other–thank God we have 6 zones in the country those who cannot reside side by side with each are also free to go-as well–

  • Sunday Oruerakpo Agboro

    Now we can bring home the trophy. Good job lads.

  • Armstrong

    Wat a great come back just wish my govt of GEJ can come back like this nd deliver in dis remaining months b4 2015 elections

    • Ette

      Exactly the thought that flashed into my mind when the match ended but unfortunately rather than improving he will sink down the more judging from the corruption filled budget he presented and the election time table released by INEC. Let him prepare to pack home while our boys advance to the semis.

  • naija man

    God bless Naija.

  • Too stressful but congratulations to the Eagles.

  • Fairgame

    Our football has really prospered under this administration. It shows that the minister of sports and NFF are getting it right. I applaud all- the president, the minister of sports, the NFF and ofcourse the coach Keshi, the team behind him Amokachi and co, the super eagles and all supporters. All glory is to God, the creator of the universe. God is working out miracles in and for Nigeria. We will overcome all the nations that have grown arrogant before God because God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble. Keep soaring Super eagles! Keep soaring!