Match - Sat 16 June, 17:00,
Eagles fly past Rwanda
Ahmed Musa vs Godfroid Steven of Rwanda in Calabar Saturday
The Eagles beat Rwanda 2-0 in Calabar after both teams played out a goalless draw in Kigali in February.
The final round of the qualifiers for final places at South Africa 2013 will be played between September and October.
“It was very important that we won this game. This will improve the confidence in the team,” said Eagles skipper Joseph Yobo, who was sidelined by a hamstring injury and so did not feature in this game.
Nigeria took the lead after nine minutes when Spain-based striker Ike Uche fired home from inside the box after giant central defender Azubuike Egwuekwe helped on an Ahmed Musa corner with a header.
The Eagles doubled their advantage on 56 minutes through Ahmed Musa.
The CSKA Moscow winger thundered past Rwanda goalkeeper Jean Claude Ndori after he was beautifully set up by Enyimba striker Uche Kalu, who chested a long ball by Efe Ambrose.
Nigeria did more to get a result at home, but the Rwandese will not be ashamed to be eliminated from the AFCON as they held their own especially after the interval when they opened up in search of goals.
On 18 minutes, Rwanda goalkeeper Ndori pulled off an instinctive save after an audacious effort by Gabriel Reuben, who tried something like a bicycle kick on top of the 18-yard box.
In the 24th minute, Rwanda spurned their best chance at goal but the header from inside the Nigeria goal area missed the target narrowly to the relief of the Eagles defence led by skipper Vincent Enyeama.
Man of the match Reuben and Obiora Nwankwo will also test the sharpness of Ndori with a couple of long-distance shots.
After Musa’s 56th minute goal, Nigeria had several chances to add to the tally.
Rwanda’s best chance came in the 81st minute when striker Meddie Kagere’s header crashed against the crossbar with goalkeeper Enyeama well beaten.