#Emmlaw Nigeria reach last 16 of U20 World Cup

Nigeria beat South Korea 1-0 to secure an automatic qualification to the second round

Olarenwaju Kayode celebrates after scoring the winner

Portugal and Nigeria won their final Group B matches to reach the last 16 of the Under-20 World Cup on Thursday, while third-place South Korea still has a chance of advancing.

Portugal striker Bruma scored his fourth and fifth goals of the event to help the two-time champions beat Cuba 5-0 and top the group, while Nigeria defeated South Korea 1-0 after an early goal by Olarenwaju Kayode and overtook the Asians for second place.

Ricardo, Aladje and To Ze also found the net for Portugal, while Bruma almost added a sixth when his thundering 20-meter (yard) effort hit the top of the crossbar.

It was Portugal’s biggest ever win in the competition, improving on 3-0 defeats of Argentina in 1991 and the Netherlands four years later.

Portugal won the title in 1989 and ’91 and finished runner-up to Brazil two years ago. Cuba, which lost all three games and became the first team to be eliminated, was making its first appearance in the tournament.

Nigeria secured its victory after Kayode was left unmarked by the South Korean defense and headed home a free kick by captain Abdul Ajagun in the ninth minute.

South Korea, which held Portugal to a 2-2 draw Monday, dominated play for large parts of the second half but lacked creativity in attack.

The best four teams to finish third in the six groups will advance to the knockout stage, along with all the group winners and runners-up.

In the last matches of Group A, the United States was taking on Ghana and Spain was playing France later Thursday. Spain won its two previous matches and has already secured its spot in the next round.


Author: Emmlaw

Nigerian, Black & Proud

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