Sunday 4 December 2016

Enyeama gifts Greece points

Published 18/06/2010 | 05:00

A blunder by Nigeria goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama, curiously named man-of-the-match, handed Greece their first-ever World Cup victory yesterday and left the Super Eagles facing an early exit from the tournament.

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Enyeama, whose team were down to 10 men following Sani Kaita's red card, failed to deal with a soft shot from Alexandros Tziolis in the 72nd minute. The rebound fell kindly to Vasileios Torosidis, who toe-poked the ball home.

It was a sad end for Nigeria who had opened the scoring through Kalu Uche's free-kick, only for Greece to equalise through Dimitrios Salpingidis' deflected shot. Kaita accepted referee Oscar Ruiz's decision to award him a red card for a studs-up challenge on Torosidis.

"I would like to apologise to the Nigerian people, my team-mates and to the officials," said Kaita.

Nigeria coach Lars Lagerback, meanwhile, was left frustrated by the officials.

"You go to the World Cup every four years and I am extremely disappointed," he said. "The referees tell us to cooperate but you cannot speak to them after the game."

Greece -- Tzorvas; Vyntra, Papadopoulos, Kyrgiakos, Torosidis, Papastathopoulos (Samaras, 37); Tziolis, Katsouranis, Karagounis; Gekas (Ninis, 79), Salpigidis.

Nigeria -- Enyeama; Odiah, Yobo, Shittu, Taiwo (Echiejile, 55; Afolabi, 79); Kaita, Etuhu, Haruna, Uche; Yakubu,Odemwingie (Obasi, 46).

Ref -- O Ruiz (Colombia).

Irish Independent

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