Bashiru’s Equaliser Rescues Nigeria Super Eagles From Defeat to South Africa in 2026 World Cup Qualifiers

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The Nigeria Super Eagles are now winless in their first three games in the CAF 2026 World Cup Qualifiers after drawing South Africa in Uyo.

The three-time African champions settled for a 1-1 draw against South Africa at Godswill Akpabio in their third game in Group C.

It was the first time the Super Eagles have clashed with the Bafana Bafana after knocking them out in the 2023 AFCON semifinals.

With thousands of home fans gracing the match venue to cheer the 2023 AFCON runners-up to victory, the Bafana Bafana were set to swim against the tides. However, it was a decent outing for the 2023 AFCON Bronze medalists.

The Super Eagles dominated proceedings in the game from the start but could not make it count. Coming under heavy pressure, The South Africans retreated to the defence while hoping to catch out the hosts on the counter.

It was a near-barren run with a few chances created by both sides. Nigeria had the upper hand going forward but were dealt a blow a minute before the half-hour. Zwane found the back of the net for the visitors against the run of play.

With barely 16 minutes left before the break, the South Africans were set to end the first 45 with an unlikely win. Nigeria stepped up their attack after conceding but the numerous bodies in South African defence were equal to the task. The first half ended with the away side leading by a lone goal.

A minute into the second half, the Super Eagles sent the stands bonkers with the equaliser. Dele-Bashiru had latched on Alex Iwobi’s assist to net the equaliser for Nigeria.

With the scores tied, Nigeria mounted more pressure looking for their first win in the group. Atalanta forward and 2024 Europa League final hero, Ademola Lookman, unleashed some threats but it was not enough to put the visitors’ backline asunder.

With a few minutes left to play, Nigeria ramped up pressure for a winner but South Africa held on to secure a crucial point away.

The draw has seen the Super Eagles drop to second from bottom in Group C of the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers. They have drawn all their three games. Newly appointed head coach Finidi George will hope to reverse the winless deadlock when the team takes on Benin Republic in their next fixture on Monday, June 10, 2024.

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