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 OLYMPICS 2000:   
               The Football Tournament
day 1
day 2
day 3

all groups: 
group A
group B
group C
group D
final + 3rd

back to top 

DAY 1 

Sep 13, 2000 
Nigeria - Honduras  3:3  
-in the beginning advantages for Nigeria, but Honduras with chances, too 
Then goals: 
-solorun by Italy based Suazo (Nigerians want to have seen a handball), shot from 12 meters, no chance for the keeper (0:1) 
-Ikedia sets up the equaliser with a great solo run 
-but Honduras strike back: a distance shot from an unusual angle that leaves the goalkeeper surprised (1:2) 
-a penalty for Honduras caused in a one against one situation by the Nigerian keeper (1:3) 
-Agali's header (2:3) 
-a solorun and 18 meter shot into the triangle (3:3) 
Nigeria: Etafia, Okunowo, Babayaro, Iyenemi (Okoronkwo), Igbinadolor (Agali), Ayegbeni, A.Oliseh, Garba, Ikedia, Okpara, Aghahowa 
0:1 ('35) Suazo 
1:1 ('50) Igbinadolor 
1:2 ('60) Leon 
1:3 ('76) Suazo (pen.) 
2:3 ('78) Agali 
3:3 ('injury time) Ayegbeni 
> FIFA match facts  (to open links in a new window, click on the link with your right mouse butten an choose 'open link in a new window' or similar) 

Australia - Italy  0:1 
hard fought and open match 
-opportunities for both 
-sensational save by Abbiati ('43) 
-big opporunity for Italy ('56) 
-Pirlo free kick against the cross bar ('60) 
(-the referee seems to have adapted to the Olympic spirit: to pretend there is no bad foul) 
-Abbiati rescues again ('80) 
-mistake in the Australian defence and Pirlo scores in a 2 against 1 situation ('81) 
-successful Italian defending for the rest of the match

day 1
day 2
day 3

all groups: 
group A
group B
group C
group D
final + 3rd

back to top 
DAY 2 

Italy - Honduras  3:1  
-('1) spectacular start by Honduras 
-('2) Italy strikes back with a similar dangerous attack 
-Honduras excites the crowd with their spectacuar attackers, Leon and Suazo (also Martinez), Italians make a lot of foulds to stop them. 
-But Honduras is vulnarable to the sharp and fast Italian counter attacks: 
-('12) Comandini header - 1:0 
-it is an exciting match, but it looks like the cleverness of the Italians will beat the risky attacking game of Honduras 
-('17) sensetional goal on another counter attack - a header from 16 meters (!!) by Ambrosini 2:0 
-Italians have been perfect on their counter attacks, they are so dangerous. And in defence they have double as much players than Honduras had against the Italian attacks. Now the match starts to shift a bit into the half of the Americans as they have lost confidence in build up. 
-('21) Comandini - another counter attack and a perfect goal from 18 meters - 3:0 
-Honduras will have to stop attacking or they will get 10 
-('26) almost the fouth, a huge display by Italy so far 
-('28) A corner by Leon and a header makes it 3:1 
-('53) Honduras still attacking and with an opportunity 
-('54) spectacular looking save by Abbiati against a 20 meter shot 
-('62) with Abbiati already beaten an Italian defender denies a Honduras attacker the way to the goal 
-('64) a Martinez shot goes wide as Honduras are still attacking but the dangerous Italian attacks are rare 
-('65)('66) just said this, Italy runs two dangerous ones, Honduras defence can clear the situations in last moments 
-('76) about the tenth time Suazo, the Honduras star player, is stopped by a foul 
-('86) Italians who defend with 9 players, have a rare counter opportunity after a missunderstanding between Honduras defenders but the keeper can steal the ball from Ventola 
-('90) Honduras get the applaus but Italy almost get the goal: Ventolas shot is saved by the keeper 
-('injury time) Italy: a Gattuso goal is disallowed 

Australia - Nigeria  2:3  
-0:1 ('15) Ikedia (Aghahowa won the ball against Australian defenders) 
-0:2 Aghahowa 
-reports say Australia starts to get into the game 
-1:2 ('41) Foxe (deflected free kick) 
-2:2 ('43) Wehrman 
-the Nigerian should have known better: a two goal advantage at Olympics does not mean opponents will give up. Now the crowd will become an additional factor. 
-the second half has begun with a lot of bad emotions and Emerton (Aus) and Babayaro (Nig) have been sent off 
-2:3 Agali  

day 1
day 2
day 3

all groups: 
group A
group B
group C
group D
final + 3rd

back to top 
DAY 3 
Before the match: 
Italy*  2 4-1 6
Nigeria  2 6-5 4
Honduras  2 4-6 1
Australia  2 2-4 0
first two will qualify for quarter-final 

Australia - Honduras  1:2  
-0:1('3) Suazo 
-1:1('51) Curcija 
-1:2('60) Suazo 
Tough luck for talented Honduras: they are out. Not because of todays match but because of conceding the two late goals against Nigeria in the first match. 

Australia wanted to give all in front of their home crowd to get at least one win although they had been already without any chance to advance.  
But Honduras big talent Suazo scored two and again a team with a lot of technical skills beat the Australians whose game seemed to have been based to much on fighting spirit only. 

Italy - Nigeria  1:1  

1st half: 
Nigeria: Etafia, Okunowo, Kanu, Agali, Igbinadolor, Oliseh, Lawal, Ikedia, Okpara, Okonorokwo, Aghahowa (order as given by source, it is not the tactical order) 
Italy: Abbiati, Mezzano, Ferrari, Comandini, Baronio, Pirlo, Margiotta, Rivalta, Cirillo, Vanucchi, Zanetti 
-('3) Italy breaks through by a sophisticated combination, #16 falls, but referee says no penalty 
-('4) Nigeria pays a first visit to the Italian penalty area 
-('12) Italy: #16 volleys the ball wide from 16 meters 
-('14) Italy: huge error in the Nigerian defence but Commandini only targets direct on the keeper 
-Italy with only 5 players of the team that started against Honduras look sharp. They want at least one point to save them top spot of the group 
-('15) Nigeria: Agali causes some trouble for the Italian defenders but his shot goes far wide 
-('18) Italians already have worked out a couple of yellow cards against Nigeria as the referee seems to be a little quick with them 
-('25) Nigeria: Ikedia with a solorun gets a free kick on the right hand side. It is played quickly but an Italian defender can clear the ensuing cross for a corner. 
-although there are not too many goal scenes, it smells goals as the Italians look dangerous against a Nigerian defence that does not look too solid, especially when losing balls against pressing in build up. On the other side Nigerian attackers look too skillful as if the Italians could stop them the entire match. 
-('39) Ikedia solorun - a through ball on Agali, Abbiati comes late, touches Agali, he falls - penalty 
-('40) Lawal coolly into the upper left triangle, no chance for Abbiati - 0:1 
-('45) Nigeria with 2 scenes: Ikedia with another solorun and Agali after a through ball are both with free way to the goal but both with odd shots wide 
halftime 0:1 
The goal has changed the match. In the final five minutes of the half Nigeria has gained confidence and momentum. 

2nd half: 
-Nigeria plays with a lot of confidence now but also a little casual 
-('53) half chances on both sides, for Nigeria it is Aghahowa who is dangerous for the first time but Italy answer with a fast counter attack 
-it looks good for Nigeria, as Honduras have conceded the equaliser inn the other match 
-('60) A.Oliseh stops a #16 Vanucchi run by a foul - he is one of the players which had received early yellow cards - this means his second and expulsion 
-('61) dangerous situation at the ensuing free kick but the header goes high across the bar 
-now Italy gains momentum again with Nigeria dangerous on the counter attack 
-('63) huge scene for Ikedia again: a solorun makes the entire defence dizzy, the square pass to #8 but his finishing too weak 
-('64) Italy: a corner is played surprisingly 25 or 30 meters to the goal, a direct volley by #8 Baronio which is deflected by #7 Comandini into the goal - 1:1 
-Italy are hot now and Nigeria in danger: Honduras have scored 
-('69) huge opportunity for Nigeria but Aghahowas shot goes centimeters over the bar 
-('72) A lawal free kick from 30+ m gets dangerous but mastered by Abbiati 
-it is an exciting second half 
-('77) Great Abbiati save against An Agali header 
-('81) Nigeria: Lawal shot wide 
-('84) Italy: comandini across the bar 
-('89) both teams begin to play carefully now  
-('injury time) almost costly mistake in Nigerian build up - but Margiotta is gracious and shoots wide 
final result 1:1 
A very good second half by Nigeria against a a dangerous Italian team with one man down they remained dangerous and have definitively reentered the circle of potential gold medal candidates. They are qualified for quarter-finals, Ítaly has won the group.  
Italy*  3 5-2 7
Nigeria*  3 7-6 5
Honduras  3 6-7 4
Australia  3 3-6 0
first two have qualified for quarter-final

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