“Unfortunate – and fortunate – with the Europeans”. Find out in this article five facts and curiosities about Nigeria football team!
In three out of five editions of the FIFA World Cup Nigeria has qualified for the knockout phase, but then, in the round of 16, they have always been eliminated by a European: Italy (2-1 in extra time) in 1994, Denmark (4-1) in 1998 and France (2-0) in 2014.
All the six of Nigerian FIFA World Cup victories have been over European teams: Bulgaria (3-0 in 1994, 1-0 in 1998), Greece (2-0, 1994), Spain (3-2, 1998), Bosnia and Herzegovina (1-0, 2014) and Iceland (2-0, 2018).
Jay Jay Okocha, Joseph Yobo and Vincent Enyeama are the only Nigerian player to have played in three editions of the FIFA World Cup.
With nine wins and three draws in the 2010 tournament, Nigeria ended a FIFA World Cup qualifier unbeaten for the first time. The same goes for the qualifying tournament for the 2014 World Cup, which ended with 5 wins and 3 draws.
Nigeria won the 2013 edition of the Africa Cup thanks to a 1-0 victory against Burkina Faso (MBA goal). Victory that also earned them the qualification to the Confederations Cup in 2013, where the African team was eliminated in the group stage, with Thaiti, Spain and Uruguay.
Nigeria have not lost an African qualifying match for the World Cup since June 20, 2004 (1-0 in Angola).