Game :- Nigeria vs Algeria
Competition :- 3rd place playoff, African Cup of Nations 2010
Venue :- Complexo da Sr. da Graça, Benguela
Date :- January 30, 2010
KO time :- 17:00 Angolan time.
Both Nigeria and Algeria were found wanting at the semifinal stage of the competition. They have a chance to salvage some pride and get their hands on the bronze medal when they meet in the third place playoff in Benguela, a day before the finals.
Nigeria – recent form – most recently played games first
Nigeria 0-1 Ghana
Nigeria 0-0 Zambia
Nigeria 3-0 Mozambique ( Peter Odemwingie*2,Obafemi Martins)
Nigeria 1-0 Benin (Yakubu)
Nigeria 1-3 Egypt (Obasi)
In their semi-final, a solitary goal by Gyan Asamoah in the 21st minute was enough to relegate Nigeria to the third place playoff match. The Rennes striker was left unmarked at the near post and headed in Kwadwo Asamoah’s corner. Nigeria responded positively with Martins and Odemwinge. The Newcastle United striker wasted a couple of clear cut chances. When the Eagles contrived to keep their shots on target, Ghana keeper Richard Kingston proved to be an unsurmountable hurdle. Yakubu came on in the second half and had two decent chances which he wasted. Shaibu Amodu will be tempted to include Seyi Olofinjana, Kalu Uche and Dickson Etuhu in the starting lineup against Algeria. Onyekachi Apam will be available for selection after serving his suspension. Joseph Yobo will be the notable absentee at the back.
Algeria – recent form – most recently played games first
Algeria 0-4 Egypt
Ivory Coast 2-3 Algeria (Karim Matmour, Madjid Bougherra, Hameur Bouazza)
Angola 0-0 Algeria
Mali 0-1 Algeria (Rafik Halliche)
Algeria 0-3 Malawi
Algeria always seem to score in alternate games. Thus according to this statistic they should get at least a goal against Nigeria. Faouzi Chaouchi, Nadir Belhadj and Rafik Halliche can’t be the goalscorers as all of them have been suspended following their red cards against Egypt in the semi-final. Veteran striker Rafik Saifi faces a race against time to be fit for the game. If fit, he will be the Fennecs’ main threat in the attacking third.
Match Verdict:Algeria’s fralilties were exposed horribly by Egypt in the semis. Nigeria put up a more respectable performance in defeat. Going on current form, Nigeria should edge this one.
Nigeria 2-1 Algeria (Martins, Odemwinge // Matmour)