Nigeria Under-17 national team secured their place in the semi-finals of the African Junior Championship, as well as the the Fifa World Cup finals later this year after a commanding win over Zambia in Niamey, Niger Republic, on Saturday.
Golden Eaglets skipper Kelechi Nwakali scored a goal either side of Victor Osimeh’s brace to increase his tally to three- same as the latter- on conclusion of the group stage matches.
Zambia skipper Patson Daka grabbed a consolation for debutantes, Chipolopolo juniors, who threw caution to the winds despite an improved second half display.
The victory at the Stade Municipal saw Nigeria finish the group stages with seven points, three ahead of Guinea- 2-1 losers to hosts Niger- in second place. Zambia and Niger finished on three points each with a win and two losses apiece.
Guinea nonetheless are the other team from Pool A joining Nigeria in Chile in October, courtesy of the four points they collected in the first two group matches of the opening round.
The Syli juniors suffered a 2-1 defeat at the hands of the hosts. Two first-half goals settled the day for the home team in front of a partisan crowd at the Stade Seyni Kountche.
Issoufou Boubacar opened scoring within two minutes of kickoff following a good run into the Guinea area but Abdoulaye Keita restored parity after 27 minutes. Ismael Lara restored Niger’s lead on 39 minutes to help the hosts finish on a high.