The Golden Eaglets lost their 100% record tonight when they fell 2-1 to Australia at the U17 World Cup in Brazil.
It was the first time ever Nigeria will lose at this level to Australia, who defended stoutly a second half lead to deny the Eaglets another comeback in Brazil.
Nigeria won the group with six points from three matches, while Australia could still go through as one of the third-best losers.
Ecuador finished second in Group B after they pipped Hungary 3-2.
Nigeria will have to blame selfish play, poor finishing and inspired goalkeeping by Australia’s Adam Pavlesic for their first loss in Brazil.
The Eaglets dominated possession, created the better chances, but for wayward finishing they ought to have posted a comfortable lead against the Australians in the first period.
It was an open and enjoyable game as both teams tested the opposing defences at will.
Australia went in front against the run of play when striker Noah Botic slotted home from a pass delivered from the left on 13 minutes.
Two minutes later, they would have doubled their advantage, but goalkeeper Joseph Oluwabusola in his first start in Brazil saved the Golden Eaglets when he blocked the effort with his leg.
Nigeria drew level in the 21st minute, when Peter Olawale, one of four changes by coach Manu Garba, turned sharply inside the box before firing past the impressive Australia goalkeeper.
However, the Australians regained the lead in the 54th minute, when Usman Ibrahim fouled inside his box and Botic converted the resulting penalty.
This was just moments after Hamzat Ojediran had failed to put away a glit-edged chance at the other end of the pitch.
Akinkunmi Amoo was denied five minutes from time by the Australia shot stopper as Nigeria players lined up to shoot at the opposing goal.
The Joeys then hung on to this advantage till the end, soaking all the pressure Nigeria could muster.
Eaglets starting XI vs Australia
Joseph Oluwabusola – Oluwatimilehin Adeniyi, Charles Etim, Ikenna, Usman Ibrahim – Samson Tijani, Quadri Edun, Akinkunmi Amoo, Said Ibrahim – Peter Olawale (Devine Nwachukwu 83), Olakunle Olusegun (Ibraheem Jabaar 62)