The Super Eagles of Nigeria are set to begin their chase for glory at the 2018 World Cup in Russia as they take on Croatia in the second game in Group D.
With the first game in Group D involving Argentina and Iceland ending in a 1-1 draw, a victory for either Nigeria or Croatia will give them an early advantage.
This is the first ever meeting between Nigeria and Croatia and an explosive encounter is expected at the 35,000-seater Kaliningrad Stadium.
The Super Eagles have a good record when they face European teams in their opening World Cup games.
It is understood that President Muhammad Buhari spoke with the Super Eagles captain, John Mikel Obi, earlier today to let him know how Nigerians are eager to see the Super Eagles soar in Russia.
Stay with PREMIUM TIMES for the Live Updates.
Kickoff is 8 p.m.
Nigeria Starting XI
Croatia Staring XI
Both teams warm up on the pitch before kick off.
This is Nigeria’s sixth World Cup appearance while this is the fifth for the Croats..
Mikel leads the Super Eagles team on to the pitch and Luka Modric does same for Croatia
The Croatia national anthem and the Nigeria national anthem follows promptly
Yes we are ready and Super Eagles kick off the game
Free kick for Nigeria.. Ighalo brought down
Victor Moses lobs the ball but Croatia do the needful
Overall Nigeria have played 18 World Cup matches, winning five, drawing three and losing 10 while scoring 20 goals and conceding 26.
It has been a fast-paced game so far
Shehu ABDULAHI concedes a corner
Victor Moses clutches to his knees after a rash challenge from Rakitic
Super Eagles springing passes as they find a way to break the Croatia defense
Mikel disposses Modric of the ball swing a cross but the Croatia keeper makes a catch to deny Ighalo a header
Shot! Perisic with a thunderbolt but goes over the bar and Uzoho ready it
Balogun is penalised for pushing Andrej Kramaric
Victor Moses goes down hoping for a free kick but the Brazilian referee waves play on
Ighalo blows a good chance with his indecisive
Bleeding nose for Leon Balogun who was elbowed why attempting to nod the ball
Goal… Croatia take the lead.. Etebo own goal
Chance! Andrej Kramaric from Croatia but his header goes wide
Moses brought down again
End of first half Croatia 1-0 Nigeria
Croatia get the second half underway
Nigeria win a corner but Balogun nods over the bar
Moses shoots wide from the box
Rakitic fires another rising shot that goes over the bar
Ighalo angry as the referee gives a Free kick against him
Croatia still holding on to their slim lead
Moses tries an ambitious attempt from 25 yards but straight into.the goalkeepers hands
Good cross by Brian Idowu but Ighalo nods into the hands of the keeper
Sub Alex Iwobi out for Ahmed Musa
Yellow card for Willam Troost and penalty for Croatia
Modric nets the second goal for Croatia from the penalty spot
Iheanacho who replaced Ighalo almost pulls one back
Rebic off for Kovavic
Uzoho parries off the boots of Rakitic to avoid another goal
Ahmed Musa almost connects a pass from Iheanacho but blocked..
Looping header from Balogun.. easy catch for the Croatiakeeper
Mikel off for simmy Nwankwo
Four minutes added time
FULL TIME: CROATIA 2-0 NIGERIA
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