….Esimhen emerges the highest goal scorer in the tournament’s history
The Nigerian U-17 squad has again shown the world their superiority in the FIFA Under 17 Chile 2015 by lashing their Malian counterparts 2-1 early this morning in the final of the tournament.
The first 45 minutes of the game was dominated by Mali after the Nigerian boys lost a penalty kick in less than three minutes into the game. The penalty was caused by Mali’s left-back, Chato, who contacted the ball with his hand in the 18 yard box.
The Malian goalkeeper, Samuel Diarra parried the penalty and the next header by the penalty shooter, Ebere was denied entering into the net by the pole.
However, the first half of the match was fruitless as every effort made by both sides was proofed abortive. The Eaglets were able to bear the pressure mounted on them by Mali.
But the second half was a show time for the Nigerians as they took the lead with a strike from Victor Esimhen with an assist from Chinedu Madueke that left the Malian defense devastated and their goal keeper helpless in the 12th minute of the return time.
The Malians were yet to recover to the shuck of the goal when another was pounded by unstoppable Folunsho Bamgboye to seal the victory three minutes after the first goal.
The super Golden Eaglets’ hit-man, Esimhen’s goal of the match made him top the list of the highest goal scorers since the tournament emerged in 1985. The tall and tough attacker had found the back of the next in every game played by the Nigerian team in the just concluded junior world cup and he bagged home a golden boot and silver ball.
Others honoured are Mali goal keeper, Sami Diarra- Golden glove, Kelechi Nwakali- Bronze boot and golden ball and Mali’s Ally Malle- bronze ball.
The just concluded U 17 world Cup was the second time two African nations clashed in the final.
-by Olawole Olusanya