Nigeria, Colombia advance to Rio Olympics q/finals

Nigeria, Colombia advance to Rio Olympics q/finals

by Samm Audu

Thursday Aug 11, 2016. 02:10

Nigeria and Colombia have advanced to the quarterfinals of the Rio Olympics after the South Americans dumped the African champions 2-0 in a final group game early Thursday.

READ: Colombia 2 Nigeria 0 As It Happened

Despite the defeat Nigeria still won Group B with six points, while Colombia finished on five points and remain unbeaten in Brazil.

Colombia also defeated Nigeria 1-0 when both teams clashed in the 1980 Olympics.

They made history by qualifying for the group stage for the first time.

Japan finished third with four points after they pipped Sweden 1-0 in the other game in this group.

Colombia went in front as early as the fourth minute goal through skipper Teofilo Guiterrez in this Rio Olympics final Group B match in Sao Paulo.

It was his third goal of the campaign.

They then doubled their lead from the penalty spot in the 62nd minute through Darlon Pabon after goalkeeper Apeyi had upended a Colombia player inside the box.

Nigeria coach Samson Siasia rested several key stars for this game ahead of the knockout rounds of the competition.

Colombia created the better chances and could have won more goals going into the interval.

Goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi pulled off a big save in the 19th minute, when he scooped for a corner a goal-bound header and six minutes later, Darlon Pabon wasted a through ball when he came face-to-face with the Nigeria shot stopper.

Nigeria’s best chance fell to Oghenekaro Etebo, but he dragged his shot wide from inside the box in the 28th minute after he was set up by Sadiq Umar.

And minutes later, he was denied by Cristian Bonella, who blocked his free kick with his feet.

In the 74th minute, Harold Preciado failed to direct his shot at goal after a long ball beat a Nigeria defender inside the box.

Nigeria will play the last five minutes of the match a man short after dangerman Etebo was forced out of the game by injury and Siasia had exhausted his substitutions.

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