The Nigerian national U-17 team, the Golden Eaglets, were defeated 1-0 by their Moroccan opponents in the tournament's second game of Group B.
The Moroccan team defeated the Golden Eaglets last Wednesday, May 20, 2023, continuing the U17 AFCON in Algeria, but the Nigerians had defender Yahaya Lawali to cheer them on as he was once again named the game's Most Valuable Player (MVP).
Early on in the game, Morocco took the lead thanks to a goal from Ittihad Tanger B midfielder Abdel Hamid Maali; Tochukwu Joseph Ogboji of Nigeria attempted to block the shot before it entered the goal.
The Young Lion Atlas held on to qualify for the knockout rounds of the competition from Group B, mirroring Senegal's U-17 team, which has won two consecutive games in the ongoing competition in Algiers.
Morocco has six points from two games, while Nigeria has three, as does South Africa's U-17 team, which won against Zambia in their second game after losing to the Nigerians in their first game of Group B.
The Golden Eaglets must now defeat South Africa in their final group game to advance to the next round, which Nigeria has consistently qualified for at any level of competition.
Despite being named Man of the Match for the second consecutive game, Nigeria's fullback, Yahaya Lawali, was disappointed with the outcome of the game against Morocco, especially given his excellent performance against Morocco.
“I have missed feelings being named man of the match. It is a good thing for me, but as a team, we are sad that we lost the match today (Wednesday). It was a critical game for us, and it is heartbreaking to lose,” Lawali stated.
Lawali stressed the team's effort to win their next game against South Africa, which will ensure qualification for the next stage of the competition.
He indicated, "We are heartbroken that we couldn’t take our chances, but we are sure to do better in our next match." "We work to ensure we are better and more efficient with scoring."
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