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Shettima in the stadium as Super Eagles beat South Africa in AFCON semi-final

Shetimma led the delegation of government officials who were in Bouake to cheer the Super Eagles to victory in the tense AFCON semi-final match against South Africa.

Shettima in the stadium as Super Eagles beat South Africa in AFCON semi-final [Presidency]

The VP made a short trip to Bouaké on Wednesday, February 7, 2024, alongside some state governors and other government officials, to watch the Super Eagles battle for a berth in the final of the ongoing competition.

He watched from the stands as the Nigerian players traded tackles with the Bafana Bafana in a nerve-racking encounter at the Stade de la Paix in Bouaké.

Nigeria emerged victorious in a penalty shootout after the match finished one goal apiece after 90 minutes and extra time. And Shetimma later joined the players and officials in the dressing room to celebrate the victory.

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With a place in the final at stake, the two countries came into the match determined to hedge each other out. However, there was barely little to separate both sides attacking-wise as Nigeria's defence repelled all the onslaught launched by the Bafana Bafana.

South Africa created a couple of dangerous situations in the Nigerian defence but failed to take their chances as Super Eagles goalie Stanley Nwabali made two regulation saves in the first half.

The Nigerian boys showed some flashes as the half wore on but couldn't really threaten Ronwen Williams in the South African goal. The half ended in a stalemate as both teams failed to undo each other.

However, the Super Eagles transformed into a different team in the second half and pinned their opponent down in their half in the early exchanges.

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With no clear-cut chances created, the Nigerian coach Jose Peseiro rang the changes in the 63rd minute, replacing Fulham midfielder Alex Iwobi and Moses Simon of Nantes with Royal Antwerp midfielder Alhassan Yusuf and Samuel Chukwueze of AC Milan, respectively.

The two substitutions will have a significant impact on the game. First, Chukwueze linked up with his fellow Serie A mate Victor Osimhen in the middle of the pack, and the gangling striker bullied his way into the South African box and won a penalty after being hacked down by Mothobi Mvala.

Captain of the team, William Troost-Ekong, stepped up from the back to convert from the spot to put Nigeria in the lead. The Super Eagles had a couple of chances to extend their lead but didn't make the most of them.

Atalanta of Italy forward Ademola Lookman had a brilliant opportunity to put the game beyond the South Africans, but his attempt to dribble past Williams after being sent through on goal by Chukwueze failed woefully.

The Nigerians thought they had finally succeeded in scoring the second goal in the 85th after Osimhen tapped in Bright Osayi-Samuel's excellent squared pass from close range. But the joy was short-lived after a VAR review showed that substitute Yusuf had fouled a South African player in the Nigerian box at the start of the move.

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The Egyptian referee pointed to the spot after reviewing the action on the pitch-side monitor. Bafana Bafana midfielder Teboho Mokoena sent Nbawali the wrong way to level the tie and dragged the game into extra time.

The Super Eagles tried to win the game in the extra time, with the South Africans playing for a penalty shootout.

Three minutes after coming in for Osimhen in the 110th minute, Nice FC of France striker Terem Moffi was sent through on goal by another substitute, Kelechi Iheanacho, but was brought down by Themba Kekana right at the edge of the box.

After a VAR review, the referee issued a red card to the South African defender. Iheanacho stepped up to take the freekick, but his effort was comfortably saved by Williams.

The game was decided on penalties, with Nawabali becoming the hero for Nigeria after saving two penalty kicks. The Super Eagles secured a place in the final after converting four spot kicks to win 4-2.

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They will play the winner of the second semi-final match between hosts Cote d'Ivoire and DR Congo.

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