Nigeria U20 secured a 2-1 comeback win over Dominican Rep. to get their World Cup campaign to a bright start in Group D on Sunday.

An own goal from Guillermo De Peno and second-half Samson Lawal’s strike completed Nigeria’s comeback against FIFA U-20 World Cup newcomers Dominican Republic at Mendoza Stadium.

Nigeria 2-1 Dominican Republic

Goals: Azcona pen (23), De Peno OG (31), Lawal (71)

Nigeria came from behind to defeat Dominican Republic in their FIFA U-20 World Cup Argentina 2023™ opener at Mendoza Stadium.

The Dominican Republic, playing in their first-ever FIFA match at any level, took the lead after 23 minutes when Benjamin Fredrick was adjudged to have fouled Guillermo De Peno inside the area. Captain Edison Azcona took responsibility from the spot to fire home his nation’s maiden strike.

Nigeria levelled soon after, though, when goalkeeper Xavier Valdez failed to claim a long throw which De Peno inadvertently flicked into his own net. Valdez was left bloodied by the collision, but he recovered quickly to deny the dangerous Jude Sunday soon after with a fine diving save.

The Flying Eagles continued to push in the second half and completed the comeback with 20 minutes to go, as Samson Lawal pounced on a poor Israel Boatwright back-pass to slot beyond Valdez.

Nigeria and the Dominican Republic will return to U-20 World Cup action on Wednesday against Italy and Brazil, respectively.

The stat

5 Nigeria have now scored in five opening-day fixtures in a row at the U-20 World Cup since a 1-0 defeat to Venezuela at Egypt in 2009.

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