It took the ingenuity of Victor Moses for Nigeria to find a way to navigate through the ‘berlin wall of Ethiopia’ and claim win 2-0.
Victor Moses stepped up when Nigeria needed him the most,winning two penalties and converting them to help qualify Nigeria for the quarter-finals of the 2013 African Nations Cup.
Ethiopia’s composure was not in doubt and kept Nigeria at bay for the greater part of the game,restricting the Super Eagles to limited chances and were contented not to concede a goal.
Despite the triumvirate of Victor Moses,Emmanuel Emenike and Ikechukwu Uche starting in attack for Nigeria,Ethiopia kept their cool and frustrated the Nigerians.
Nigeria’s patience paid off in the 80th minute,after Victor Moses drove in through the left flank and evaded the Ethiopian defender in the box only to be hacked down in the box,giving the referee no option but to award a penalty kick.
Moses stepped up and sent the keeper the wrong way for Nigeria’s opener. Ethiopia could have equalised almost immediately,but it took the timely save of Vincent Enyeama, to stop the East Africans from equalising.
And in a swift counter attack move,Victor Moses committed the goalkeeper Sasay Bancha,who fouled him on a goal-bound move, and was subsequently sent off for a second bookable offence.
Moses converted the resulting kick,to earn Nigeria all three points which helped them finish second in the group behind Burkina Faso.
Meanwhile the defending champions,Zambia,failed to progress beyond the group stages,as they could only manage a 0-0 draw with Burkina Faso.
With the evidence of what was played today,Keshi would know that scoring two penalties against Ethiopia calls for improvement.
Nigeria will now face Ivory Coast in the quarter-finals on Sunday, can they scale that hurdle?