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Iceland vs. Nigeria: World Cup 2018 Live

June 22,2018 16:21

But Iceland qualified for this World Cup fairly easily and then went ahead and got a draw against Argentina and Lionel Messi in its opener. • Only five minutes after surrendering a goal in that game, Iceland answered on a poached shot by Alfred ...


58’: More From Nigeria
Ndidi whips in a high shot that draws a leaping save from keeper Halldorsson.
54’: Iceland’s Sigurdsson Banged Up
Extended treatment for Sigurdsson of Iceland. He was belted in the head as the goal was scored. He is fitted with a head bandage, which, weirdly, is pink.
49’: GOAL! Nigeria!
Victor Moses raced down the sideline and sent a cross into the box for Ahmed Musa. He controlled it nicely with his first touch, then used his second to slam it home. Nigeria leads!
Andrew Das: Musa earned every single bit of that goal. Won a header in the center of the field, fell down while doing it, scrambled to his feet, made up the ground, called for the cross, brought it down with a magnificent touch and then buried it off the short hop. That’s a full day in 10 seconds.
Second Half Kicks Off
Tyronne Ebuehi in for Idowu, who had a yellow for Nigeria.
Nigeria Yet to Get a Shot on Goal
Six shots for Iceland, with two of them on goal. But a big zero for Nigeria. Iceland played a more direct style, while Nigeria built from the back, possessing the ball more and passing more and more accurately. But you do need to shoot to get a goal, ordinarily.
Halftime
Iceland was the better team, but the score remains 0-0.
46’: Chance for Iceland
Free kick leads to a five-man Iceland rush to the net. It’s Finnbogason who gets a foot to it, but it’s wide. Should have done better there.
44’: Fans Looking Sleepy
The cameras capture fans of both teams watching the game. Their Cups might be on the line, but frankly many of them look bored. Not a ton of action on the pitch.
Photo
Iceland’s Gylfi Sigurdsson and Nigeria’s Kelechi Iheanacho fought for possession during their World Cup match on Friday. Credit Ueslei Marcelino/Reuters37’: Starting to Resemble a Soccer Match
A good Iceland cross whistles past the goal. Bjarnason and Bodvarsson run hard but each are half a step behind.
35’: We Have a Shot!
Bjarnason turns and shoots, but it goes far over the bar. Iceland leads in shots 3-0 now.
33’: Nigeria Winning the Fashion Game
Just about everyone who sees them falls for Nigeria’s jerseys. Pale green and white zigzags on the body and then a black and white zigzag pattern on the arms. It was a sartorial gamble but it paid off.
28’: Tiny Iceland
There is, to put it mildly, a big discrepancy between these nations. Nigeria is a country of 180 million. Iceland has 330,000 citizens to select from. And that includes children and the elderly. Iceland is the smallest country ever to play in a World Cup.
23’: Rough Start for Nigeria’s Moses
Victor Moses of Nigeria gets clobbered by a high kick from Iceland, then seconds later is conked by a ball batted away by his keeper.
Photo
Iceland’s Hordur Bjorgvin Magnusson and Nigeria’s Wilfred Ndidi during their World Cup match on Friday. Credit Ueslei Marcelino/Reuters17’: Iceland Players Using Their Heads
Nigeria gets the ball in the box three or four times in a row, but it’s cleared each time by Iceland. Nothing shot-like in the sequence. A corner follows, but it too is cleared. Many of the clearances were by the heads of the tall Iceland players.
15’: Slow Going Early
Chances are thin so far, with the evenly matched game living up to its billing. No shots at all yet for Nigeria.
8’: Corner for Nigeria
Iheanacho takes, but it’s headed away safely.
4’: Free Kick to Iceland
Sigurdsson forces a leaping save by Uzoho. That kick was going right in the upper corner. Good save.
0’: Kickoff!
Iceland in blue, Nigeria in cool lime green. Argentina fans will be following the game closely. Argentina is in a bad spot after a draw and a loss. But If Iceland wins here, it will be in an even worse spot.
Iceland’s Starting Lineup
Goalkeeper: 1 Hannes Thor Halldorsson (Randers FC)
Defenders: 14 Kari Arnason (Vikingur); 2 Birkir Saevarsson (Valur); 18 Hordur Magnusson (Bristol City); 2 Ragnar Sigurdsson (FC Rostov)
Midfielders: 8 Birkir Bjarnason (Aston Villa); 10 Gylfi Sigurdsson (Everton); 19 Rurik Gislason (SV Sandhausen); 17 Aron Gunnarsson (Cardiff City)
Forwards: 11 Alfred Finnbogason (Augsburg); 22 Jon Dadi Bodvarsson (Reading)
Nigeria’s Starting Lineup
Goalkeeper: 23 Francis Uzoho (Deportivo La Coruna)
Defenders: 5 William Troost Ekong(Bursaspor); 2 Brian Idowu (Amkar Perm); 6 Leon Balogun (Brighton); 22 Kenneth Omeruo (Chelsea)
Midfielders: 10 John Mikel Obi (Tianjin Teda); 4 Wilfred Ndidi (Leicester); 8 Oghenekaro Etebo (CD Feirense)
Forwards: 7 Ahmed Musa (Leicester); 14 Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester); 11 Victor Moses (Chelsea)
Iceland vs. Nigeria Top Story Lines
• Iceland’s run to the quarterfinals of the European Championship in 2016 had the feel of a once-in-a-lifetime event. But Iceland qualified for this World Cup fairly easily and then went ahead and got a draw against Argentina and Lionel Messi in its opener.
• Only five minutes after surrendering a goal in that game, Iceland answered on a poached shot by Alfred Finnbogason.
• What The Times said: “Iceland is a well-organized, well-drilled side, made up of hard-working, disciplined professionals and sprinkled with just a little invention and stardust.”
• You may have heard that Iceland’s coach Heimir Hallgrimsson is a dentist. “Before anyone asks. I’m still a dentist, and I will never stop being a dentist,” he said.
• Nigeria, in contrast, was very disappointing in its opener, a sluggish 2-0 loss to Croatia.
• Even being outplayed, Nigeria found some bad luck. One goal was deflected, while the other came on a penalty, though William Troost-Ekong was surely guilty of an American football-style tackle there.
• The main man on offense has been Victor Moses, of Chelsea, but he was rarely able to beat the defense himself or get a good pass to someone who could.
• The bookmakers have this game as close as a tossup to any you will see at the World Cup. An Iceland win, a Nigeria win and a draw are all given almost equal chances.

World Cup 2018 (Soccer)

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