2023 U-20 AFCON: Flying Eagles Lose To Senegal In Group Opener

The Flying Eagles of Nigeria got their campaign at the 2023 U-20 Africa Cup of Nations in Egypt off to a poor start, after losing 1-0 to Senegal in their first game in Group A played inside the Cairo International stadium on Sunday.

A late first half goal by Souleymane Faye earned Senegal the first win of the tournament.

The Flying Eagles finished the game with 10 men in stoppage time after substitute Ahmed Abdullahi was sent off for a bad challenge.

Ladan Bosso-led team will hope to bounce back from the defeat to Senegal when they face hosts Egypt on Wednesday, 22 February.

Meanwhile, the opening game of the tournament also played on Sunday, saw Egypt settle for a goalless draw against Mozambique.

The Flying Eagles had the first big chance on 21 minutes but the effort inside the box was well blocked.

In the 32nd minute a dangerous cross from the right was headed by Adams Alade which landed on the roof of the net.

Senegal were awarded a free-kick in a decent area on 34 minutes but Nathaniel Nwosu in goal for the Flying Eagles came out to claim the ball.

Senegal broke the deadlock in the 40th minute through Souleymane Faye, who slammed the ball into the net after Nwosu had saved an initial low shot by Pape Diop.

With two minutes left to play in the first half, the Flying Eagles were forced to an early substitution as Daniel Daga went off with a knock and was replaced by Nicholas Jonathan.

Just three minutes into the second half Senegal won a free-kick but the dangerous floated effort tool a slight deflection off a Flying Eagles player and rolled out for a corner.

Senegal continued to create chances and went close on 56 minutes off a dangerous cross which a Flying Eagles did well enough to head away for a corner.

On 64 minutes the Flying Eagles were awarded a free-kick close to the box of the Senegalese team but Emmanuel Uchegbu hit his left foot strike against the wall.

In the 69th minute a Flying Eagles player tried a left foot strike from distance which the Senegalese keeper saved.

Senegal almost doubled their lead on 71 minutes but Lamine Camara failed to direct his effort towards goal.

With four minutes remaining a timely clearance by a Flying Eagles defender inside the box denied a Senegalese player the chance to shoot at goal.

In the 88th minute the Flying Eagles had their first shot on target but the strike from range was well saved by the Senegalese keeper.

Senegal almost went 2-0 up on 93 minutes following a mix up between Flying Eagles keeper and his defender but Mame Ngom saw his attempt go over the bar.

A minute later Ngom missed another very good chance as he saw his strike graze the cross bar after rounding the keeper.

And in stoppage time substitute Ahmed Abdullahi was sent off for kicking the face of a Senegalese player.