World Cup 2002 - African qualification

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World Cup 2002 - African qualification - match report
Sudan - Nigeria  Jul 1, 1705 GMT
Before the match:
This group was supposed to be a two way race between the star studded teams of Nigeria and Ghana but nowLiberia are leading the group, a team which consists of players from minor important leagues and a country which is playing its campaigns under most difficult circumstanzes. Since led by player coach and soccer legend George Weah the Liberians make the most out of little and this could be enough as long as the West African star teams do just the opposite. 
> NEW: about the crisis of the big West and Central African football teams 
Not to forget Sudan who are the only team who have it still in their own hands to catch up with the 'Lone Star' (Liberia). 
Nigeria are still left with a good chance but now face the crunch match at Sudan. On a field which is difficult to play on and produces low scoring matches like 1:0, 0:0, 0:1 it will be important to score first. Nigeria are favorites but Sudan have proved they can handle their home matches like cup games. In the first match at Nigeria they had already been on the verge of a surprise before an Agali header out of the blue turned the match and made it an easy affair for the Nigerians.

1st half:
-Sudan in red shirts, red shorts, and white socks, Nigeria in green shirts, white shorts, green socks. .
-('2) Nigeria start confident and Okocha's long range rocket forces the Sudanese keeper to a spectacular save
-it is obvious Nigeria do want to leave nothing to casualty this time - the Sudanese have difficulties to reach the Nigerian half
-('6) Okocha again, this time across the bar
-('7) Sudan counter attack leads to a dangerous low shot which is saved by Shoronmu, the crowd gets excited
-('8)the Sudanese will try to surprise Nigeria by fast counter attacks, the next one ends with a mistimed cross which Shoronmu easily intercepts
-('11) Aghahowa runs past his defender and sets free Okocha or Agali who from an penalty like position shoots wide, this had been a huge opportunity 
-('18) a Sudanese counter run excites the crowd but is stopped by the last Nigerian defender
-('22) yellow for nigerian #16
-('23) Sudan with their simple game on the difficult ground is always some dangerous
-('24) Sudanese #10 runs away on the counter attack, his shot beats Shoronmu but only hits the outside of the net or the goal post
-('25) Okocha's free kick cross finds #8 unmarked but his header goes across the bar
-('27) another Nigerian cross gets dangerous as the Sudanese defence seems to have organisation problems, the insuing corner is nervously headed out for a second one
-('36) another nervousness in the Sudanese defence
-('37) hard work for the Nigerian defence and Shoronmu when three successive attacks along the right hand side lead to good crosses, Nigeria escape with a corner
-('40) it is Nigerian #2 who sets up Okocha for a low 16 meter rocket into the corner - 0:1
-('45) Sudanese play out the entire Nigerian defence by a one-two but alone in front of the keeper the nerves seem to be a factor and the ball comes quite plain on Shoronmu who saves by his body, only seconds later he has to rescue again

halftime 0:1

2nd half:
-('47) Nigeria: a # 8 (Aiyegbeni?) solorun along the left hand side, he scores from close range and difficult angle.- 0:2
-('49) Sudan answer again with an dangerous attack but no score - short range header right on the keeper
-('50) Shoronmu against a long range attempt
-('54) Nigerian #8 finishes off a promising counter attack quite poorly this time
-('62) Sudanese longe range attempt across the bar
-Nigeria in relative control of the match - or casual already?:
-('64) very good header opportunity for Sudane #10 but over the bar
-('78) Aghahowa - 0:3
-('87) Sudan lose the ball and Nigeria are three against the keeper and score - 0:4

final score 0:4
in the end it looked easier than it was. The importance of scoring fiorst became evident in the first half and after Nigeria dis it was a much easier game


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