Super Eagles Pull Draw In Friendly With Catalonia

By SR Sports

Nigeria’s Super Eagles today in Barcelona forced a star-studded Catalonia side to a 1-1 draw in a friendly match as they stepped up preparations for the African Cup of Nations.

 

Catalonia took the lead after three minutes from the penalty spot through 36-year-old Sergio Gonzalez after Fegor Ogude handled the ball inside his box.

However, US-based striker Bright Dike restored parity for Nigeria on 55 minutes with a well-taken effort after he was set up by Lazio youngster Ogenyi Onazi.

Coach Stephen Keshi started as many as seven players from the Nigeria Premier League, while the Catalans kicked off with such top stars of Spanish soccer as Xavi, Carles Puyol, Gerrard Pique and Krkic Bojan.

As was expected, Catalonia enjoyed more of the ball especially in the first half in which the Eagles hardly troubled goalkeeper Kiko Casillas in the opposite goal.

Man-of-the-match Bojan came close to doubling Catalonia’s lead after 13 minutes but he was thwarted by all-action Azubuike Egwuekwe after he had gone past skipper and goalkeeper Chigozie Agbim.

Former Barcelona ace Bojan again threatened the Nigerian goal on 33 minutes but he failed to make contact with a pass by Joan Verdi.

The Eagles appeared more composed after the interval but the attacking initiative remained with their hosts.

In the 53rd minute, Montoya was stopped from increasing the lead of the Catalonia only by some brave defending by Nigeria.
And a minute later, substitute Kenneth Omeruo headed off the goal line after the Nigeria defence was breached.

Bright Dike then fired Nigeria back into the game in the 55th minute when he smartly controlled a ball by Onazi before smashing home the equaliser all in one inspired moment.

As Nigeria came into the match with greater confidence, substitute Emmanuel Emenike was denied in the 81st minute only by the goalkeeper’s foot.
In the dying minutes, Barcelona starlet Christian Tello failed to make a goal-scoring debut for Catalonia when he came face-to-face with goalkeeper Agbim but blasted his effort wide.

The Nigeria squad will be joined by the remaining invitees in the next few days.  Coach Stephen Keshi will drop about seven players before submitting his final team list for the Cup of Nations which begins in South Africa on January 19.

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@akpos1 You should really be

@akpos1
You should really be flogged for dragging up an issue as such.. What has soccer got to do with the state of the nation? You want to incite people and make them see enemies instead of friends.. In what way have you contributed to the growth of this country? You are just a social misfit, who was fortunate enough to be born in the South, probably if you were in the north you would have been an extremist.. I wish i could see you in person, as I said earlier, you deserve to be flogged.

S.R and their substandard

S.R and their substandard reportage. You give a report a match played a day after the actually date of the match, and yet you report it as today. The match was played on wednesday and not thursday. Mtcheww

Akpos1 you're spot on this time around...

Honestly what will naija become if not of the SE and SS people. Take a look at the players and management of the super eagles team you will understand what I'm talking about. The entire team is made up of the SE and SS people. Shola Ameobi is the only exception. I wonder how cowardly Yoruba and foolish Hausa-fulanis will cope by the time we seccede from the mess called naija. Especially the northerners where everyone up there is brain dead from the word go. All they know how to do is to steal oil blocks. Shame

Clydesdale

@akpos1- are you brain dead or something- keep your tribalistic clydesdale-horse-blinkers-over-your-eyes sentiments to your damn self and let's just play ball. Opposite people. PERIOD.

Football not Sustainability

@Akpos 1
Did you in anyway read the subject and story line at all? Thank God no one paid attention to your comment...Please let the topic remain football.

Not in a hurry

I will not be in a hurry like others to celebrate what is not.I remain patriotic to Nigeria and her football team but yesterday team need very serious work for a true competition.
Smaller African countries would have present a purposeful fight against same Catalonia .
We are always in a hurry to celebrate what is not.Those stars we said were not there are not super and may have worsen our chances if they were around.
Coach Keshii,work hard on your team and present the best at the Nations cup.The same people hailing yesterday performance will crucify you when you fail in South Africa.

FOR ONCE PROUD TO BE NIGERIAN

I take this victory by the Okechukwu Keshi-led Super Eagles to be a sign of good things for 2013. For once I feel proud to be Nigerian. Only if Nigeria will give equal opportunity to people on merit notwithstanding religion, tribe or colour we can be counted as one of the greatest countries in the world. Other Americans suppressed the blacks for decades but suddenly realised the negative effect on growth and allowed equal rights. We have the best in all the 250+ tribes but they may not necessary be equal in number. If without Mikel,Yobo,Enyema,Ameobi, and Moses we got this sterling performance from these boys, then we have a great team. Keshi should convince those that will not make it to SA to understand that they are equally good but for the rules of the game; they can still make it to Brazil. God bless Nigeria.

Point of correction. It is United SS&SE nd not Nigeria.

Including the substitutes, all but one, are of United SS&SE extraction.

Were the SS&SE to witdraw its oil & gas together with its sportspeople, comedians, musicians, nollywood stars, producers, businesses, banks, professionals, inventors, etc from continent Nigeria, what will remain? will Nigeria survive 30days without SS&SE?

...but we are gone nd d barren West & North can keep d name- 'Nigeria'.

Long live the United republic of the SS&SE.

FINE START

A good beginning 4 Eagles. Kudos 2 Keshi.

Great Game!

Watched the game and can only say that the Eagles did far better than expected.
Kudos to Keshi The Big Boss.

Nigeria super eagle keep d good play

Nigeria super eagle,you guy did a very great and tremendous job,keep it up in afcon bcos we know you can do it,more grace to ur elbow.

A good beginning

With this from d super eagles, i tink its a good begining. How I wish they work hard when they get to South Africa.

A good start indeed.I have

A good start indeed.I have confidence in Keshi and I believe he will go along way in this competion. There is no regret not calling Ozasie because he was not missed in the match

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