Angry-looking football fans on Friday held Super Eagles squad members hostage at The Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City moments after surrendering a 4-0 lead to draw with Leone stars of Sierra Leone.
Sportinglife.ng reports the Eagles looked to be cruising in the first half courtesy of a brace from Alex Iwobi alongside goals from Samuel Chukwueze and Victor Osimhen before the visitors started the comeback to 4-4 draw in the Group L 2022 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier.
The three=time African champions got off to a very good start as Iwobi pounced on a loose ball to score from the edge of the box and dictated the pace of the game.
However, Sierra Leone clawed their way back and almost drew level in the 21st minute through Al-Hadji Kamara who had all the time in the world, but volleyed over following a cross from Buya Turay.
A minute after Kamara’s miss, the Eagles doubled their lead through Osimhen who finished at the far post off a low cross from Zaidu Sanusi.
Iwobi completed his brace in the 28th minute to make it 3-0 after curling the ball into the top corner inside the box.
Nigeria continued to dominate the game and were once again rewarded in the 31st minute, this time through Chukwueze.
This was after he received a flick from Osimhen and went on a solo run before putting the ball past the Sierra Leone goalkeeper.
🇳🇬 Nigeria 4-4 Sierra Leone 🇸🇱
— CAF (@CAF_Online) November 13, 2020
But with two minutes left to the end of first half, Sierra Leone pulled a goal back off Quee Kwame after Nigeria lost possession in the vital area.
Napoli forward Osimhen came close to netting a brace early in the second half after getting to the end of Ahmed Musa’s free-kick, but his header came off the bar.
On the 60th minute, the Eagles made a double substitution as Semi Ajayi replaced Leon Balogun, while Kelechi Iheanacho came in for Musa.
Sierra Leone got their second goal in the 72nd minute to make it 4-2 after a cross by Kevin Wright was met with a great header by Kamara.
The Eagles were forced to make another change as Osimhen came off the field injured, and was replaced by Chidera Ejike.
The Leone Stars scored again to make it 4-3 off Mustapha Bundu’s stunning goal and in the 86th minute Kamara got his second to complete a stunning 4-4 comeback which left the Eagles shell-shocked.
The final result did not go down well with football fans that besieged the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium to drum support the Super Eagles.
However, immediately the match ended, the fans mounted a road block at the entrance to the stadium restricting Super Eagles squad members from leaving.
Luckily, calm was restored after the intervention of officials, the fans agreed to allow the team to leave the stadium, while some of fans were busy chanting “dem don dey go one by one” others opted to bar the Gernot Rohr-tutored side from the ancient City. “We no wan see una for Benin-City again o…after everything our Governor do una fall hand.”
— Efe Erasmus (@ErasmusEfe) November 13, 2020
Interestingly, Nigeria still top the group with seven points, while Sierra Leone have two points.
Both teams clash in the reverse fixture of the AFCON qualifier on Tuesday, November 17, in Freetown, Sierra Leone.