The Super Eagles of Nigeria were handed an upset on Thursday as the Central Africa Republic (CAR) secured a shock 1-0 win in a World Cup 2022 Group C qualifier at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Lagos.
The Nigerian team dominated the game but were unable to unlock a stubborn CAR team, which asides from being ultra-defensive were also a thorn in the flesh of the host team on the counter-attack.
Nigeria struggled to create clear-cut chances, with the team’s best chance coming moments after the commencement of the second half when a lobbed shot by striker Victor Osimhen hit the crossbar and the rebound by Taiwo Awoniyi was blocked.
The game seemed destined to end as a scoreless draw but the deadlock was broken in the 91st minute through Karl Namnganda.
Namnganda took advantage of a defensive mix-up between the duo of William Troost-Ekong and Leon Balogun, popularly referred to as the “oyibo wall”, ran into the box and powered the ball home past goalkeeper Francis Uzoho.
Nigeria still top Group C with six points despite the defeat, while Central African Republic are in third with four points. Second-placed Cape Verde also have four points, while Liberia are bottom of the group with three points.
The return fixture between the Super Eagles and CAR will take place on Sunday in Douala, Cameroon.