Nigeria’s Golden Eaglets failed to conquer the Little Elephants of Ivory Coast as they went head to head in the final of the WAFU U-17 tournament, losing 3-2. Nigeria and Ivory Coast had defeated Burkina Faso and Niger Republic respectively in the semifinals en route to facing off in the final on Monday evening.
The Golden Eaglets started slowly, allowing the boys from Ivory Coast to take the lead in the first 15 minutes of the game. They duly doubled their advantage in the second half, before adding a third to put daylight between them and their Nigerian opponents. The third goal seemed to spur the Fatai Amoo-tutored Eaglets to life as Ahmed Abdullahi pulled one back with a well struck freekick in the 90th minute. Abdullahi added a second in added time to set up a grandstand finish, but it was a case of too little, too late as the Eaglets could not find an equaliser in the minutes that remained.
In spite of the result, the Golden Eaglets secured a place in the 2021 U-17 AFCON scheduled to take place in Morocco in March, representing the WAFU B-zone alongside the Little Elephants of Ivory Coast. Coach Amoo has work to do to get his boys to their best ahead of what is expected to be a tough competition.