By James Agberebi:
Nigeria’s Olympic Eagles have qualified for the semi-finals of the men’s football event of the Rio Olympics after defeating Denmark 2-0 on Saturday in Salvador.
Goals from skipper Mikel Obi and Aminu Umar sealed the win for Nigeria.
They will now meet Germany in the semi-finals.
Nigeria had their first chance on goal in the fifth minute but Stanley Amuzie’s long-range strike was well saved by Denmark’s keeper.
Denmark almost went 1-0 up on 12 minutes but the shot clipped the cross bar.
Nigeria went in front through skipper Mikel on 15 minutes, as he side-footed home a low cross by the impressive Imoh Ezekiel.
In the 20th minute Nigeria came close to doubling their lead but Ezekiel’s strike went inches over the bar.
Denmark almost drew level on 25 minutes following a looping header but Daniel palmed away for a corner.
A minute later Daniel saved a point-blank shot after a Denmark player was left unmarked.
In the 38th minute, Stanley Amuzie sent in a low drive which deflected off for a corner.
On the stroke of half time Daniel tipped a goal-bound header over the bar.
Daniel came to Nigeria’s rescue again on 56 minutes, punching away a dangerous free-kick.
Amuzie almost scored from a right-foot drive which the Denmark keeper parried away for a corner.
Umar scored on 59 minutes, heading in Mikel’s corner.
Ezekiel almost scored Nigeria’s third goal from a corner but it went inches off the post.
In the 77th minute, Azubuike Okechukwu hit a long-range strike that went just over the bar.
Nigeria made their first change on 85 minutes with Ndifreke Udo and Junior Ajayi replacing Okechukwu and Umar Sadiq.
Ajayi almost got on the score sheet on 89 minutes but blazed his effort over the bar from close-range.
Nigeria made their last substitution with Popoola Saliu replacing Ezekiel.