Tonight in San Juan in front of over 27,000 fans, two goals and a defensive Master class by the Flying Eagles knocked out host country Argentina to reach the quarterfinal of this year’s FIFA U20 World Cup.
It was a sweet revenge for Nigeria after they lost to the South Americans in the final of the same competition in 2005.
It was Nigeria’s first quarterfinal since 2011.
They will now await the winners of the Round of 16 clash between Ecuador and South Korea Thursday night to battle for a place in the last-four.
Ibrahim Mohammed ‘Beji’ put Nigeria in front in the 61st minute with an assist by sub Emmanuel Umeh.
It was the fitting reward for the Flying Eagles positive play at the start of the second half.
Provider Umeh came close to doubling the Nigeria lead moments later, but his final shot missed the mark just as goalkeeper Aniagboso pushed away a shot by Argentina for a corner at the other end of the pitch.
Haliru Sarki made the game safe for Nigeria in added time when he headed home a cross by Victor Eletu for the Flying Eagles second goal.
Nnadi was unlucky not to score in the 58th minute, when his lobbed effort from outside the box came off the crossbar with the goalkeeper well beaten.
Luka Romero of Argentina hit the foot of the post in the 84th minute beyond a diving Aniagboso.
Everything the hosts threw at their opponents failed to find target, it was as if they were not destined to score on the night.
Host nation Argentina dominated the first half, they created the better chances and enjoyed more of the ball, but the Flying Eagles held out.
Nigeria’s best chance at goal was in the 10th minute, when Ibrahim Mohammed ‘Beji’ fired at the Argentine goal, but his effort missed not by much.
Starting XI vs Argentina (4-3-3)
Aniagboso – Agbalaka, Ogwuche, Frederick, Bameyi (Captain) – Daga, Nnadi (John Joshua 90+), Samson Lawal (Kehinde Ibrahim 90+) – Ibrahim Mohammed ‘Beji’ (Eletu 79), Salim Fago (Umeh 57), Jude Sunday (Sarki 57)