Nigeria’s Olympic Eagles on Tuesday night defeated Zambia 3-1 in their second group stage match at the ongoing U23 AFCON in Egypt.
Playing at the Al Salam Stadium, Cairo who knew a defeat to Zambia would effectively mea elimination from the tournament and a chance to pick one of Africa’s ticket to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics fell to a goal down in the 12th minute when Patson Daka gave Zambia the lead ending a brilliant solo effort sending the ball past Adamu Abubakar to give Chipolopolo advantage.
But Zambia’s joy was shorty lived when Orji Okwonkwo restored parity just four minutes later, tapping the ball from close range following a corner. The first half ended with sides tied at 1-1.
Kelechi Nwakali took the lead for The Olympic Eagles sending a beautiful free-kick that wronged Zambia’s goalkeeper Mangani Banda after 65 minutes.
And deep into injury time Taiwo Awonyi made use of a swift counter attack to add Nigeria’s third of the night.
Leaders South Africa face Nigeria at Al Salam Stadium while Zambia takes on Cote d’Ivoire in a simultaneous kick off on Friday at Cairo Stadium.
Only the top three finishers at the U23 AFCON will qualify to fly Africa’s flag at the Men’s Olympic Football Tournament in Tokyo, Japan next year.