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WAFU U-20: Flying Eagles overcome Cote d’Ivoire, qualify for 2023 AFCON

THE Flying Eagles have booked their ticket to the U-20 Africa Cup of Nations after a hard-fought win over Cote d’Ivoire last night.

The Nigerian boys defeated the Ivorians 2-1 in the second semi-final of the WAFU U-20 Championship in Niamey, Niger Republic to seal a spot in the continental tournament.

Daniel Daga and Ibrahim Yahaya scored the goals — one early in the match and the other late in extra-time — to send Ladan Bosso’s side into the regional final, where they will face Benin Republic on Saturday.

Both Nigeria and Benin Republic will represent WAFU Zone B in the U-20 AFCON billed for Egypt in 2023.

Midfielder Daga gave Nigeria the lead against the Ivorians after only five minutes when he escaped his marker to head home from a cross.

The seven-time African champions kept probing for more goals by continuously attacking, but they were unable to add a second as the Ivorian defence stood firm.

Instead, it was the Junior Elephants who equalised just before half-time from a superb free-kick at the edge of Nigeria’s eighteen-yard box.

Neither team could find another goal in regulation time at the Stade General Seyni Kountché, and the game went into extra-time.

Yahaya got the winning goal for the Flying Eagles nine minutes from the end of extra-time when he coolly converted a penalty.

The Flying Eagles are unbeaten in three matches in Niamey, having defeated Ghana and drawn with Burkina Faso before last night’s win over Cote d’Ivoire.

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Naija Times