Published: Wed, June 27, 2018
Sports | By Brett Lawson

Nigeria 2 Iceland 0: Musa brace boosts Super Eagles & Argentina

Nigeria 2 Iceland 0: Musa brace boosts Super Eagles & Argentina

Following their 2-0 defeat by Croatia last week, Nigeria's chances of joining Group D leaders Croatia in the Round of 16 have been improved dramatically, but Argentina and Iceland remain in contention.

Halldorsson had to quickly be alert to prevent the Super Eagles from doubling their lead, tipping over midfielder Wilfred Ndidi's dipping 35-yard thunderbolt. In the 49th minute, however, with the score tied at 0-0, Musa took a cross, touched it onto the grass and fired it into the net off a short-hop.

Below, The Sportsman examines four talking points from the thrilling game at the Volgograd Arena.

Rather than stick with what had got Nigeria to the World Cup at a canter, Rohr opted for change.

What time does the FIFA World Cup 2018 Iceland v/s Nigeria football match begin? But if Argentina claims all three points, it can still advance depending on the result of the other match between Croatia and Iceland.

"We played them in a friendly but there was no Messi then", he said, referring to Nigeria's 4-2 victory in a friendly in November when Messi was absent.

"This group is going to be decided in the last minutes, in the last game".

Nigeria's success also ensured a renewed window of opportunity for Argentina, who were hammered 3-0 by Croatia in Nizhny Novgorod on Thursday, but now have a realistic chance to qualify if they beat the Africans on Tuesday.

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However, the Nigerian has warned his new-found hero status in Argentina is likely to end abruptly on Tuesday when the two countries meet in a decisive Group D game in St. Petersburg.

Sigurdsson's penalty miss on Friday could thus prove crucial - had he scored, they'd be two goals better off than Argentina and have the same goal difference as Nigeria.

Musa is now the Super Eagles' top scorer of the competition with four goals scored in total over his games.

Musa was lively in the first half, making some risky runs in behind the Iceland wing-backs and looking to stretch the opposition defence. Eagles coach Gernot Rohr made three changes to the team that lost 2-0 to Croatia last Friday.

From there, Nigeria were brilliant, as they attacked with pace, precision and penetration; they looked a genuine threat going forward, while in midfield there was a lot more balance and cohesion.

"We were ahead of them in our group and we've already beaten them once in Iceland, so we at least have that confidence with us when we play them", he said.

Victor Moses has been directly involved in 36% of Nigeria's 14 shots at this World Cup so far (3 shots, 2 chances created), more than any other player for the Super Eagles. His two previous World Cup goals at the 2014 tournament in Brazil were in a group match against Argentina.

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