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  • Babajide EverBlazin

U23 AFCON Qualifiers: Olympic Eagles grabs vital draw in Tanzania

Nigeria's U-23 Dream Team on Saturday grabbed a vital 1-1 draw in Tanzania in the first leg of African U23 qualifiers.

The only goal for the Salisu Yusuf tutored side was scored by Success Makanjuola following a struvbling start to the game.

With just sixty seconds before the hour mark, Remo Stars’ winger, Qudus Akanni was hacked down in the box with captain Makanjuola converting the resulting penalty to give Nigeria half time lead.

After the restart, the Tanzanians upped the ante in search for an equalizer and were rewarded for their intensity with less than 15 minutes to end the game when they won a spot kick of their own and goalkeeper Nathaniel Nwosu could not keep it out.

The scoreline remained the same till the full time as Nigeria ran out with a morale boosting result heading to the second leg.

The Dream Team will host Tanzania next weekend at the Lekan Salami Stadium, Ibadan where they hope to pick the needed win enough to see them qualify for the main tournament next year.

Speaking after the game, Coach Yusuf noted his team could have won if his boys had been more clinical upfront.

“It’s an hard game. They’re already in match situation and we are not in match situation. We could have won the game but we didn’t take two chances. We thank God for the draw.

“The plan is to win them and move to the next round by the grace of God. We will continue to work with the group and as you can see, they have improved. They’re improving as a team and I think they will play better in Nigeria”

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