Nigeria's record at FIFA U20 World Cup
The FIFA U20 World Cup kicks off on Thursday with Nigeria's Flying Eagles playing their first game the next day.
The Flying Eagles have a number of exciting moments at the FIFA U20 World Cup to her name.
The old Soviet Union won the first edition of the FIFA U20 World Cup (then known as FIFA World Youth Championship) in Tunisia in 1977.
Six years later, Tarila Okoronwanta’s first half goal condemned old Soviet Union to defeat in Monterrey, Mexico in Nigeria’s first –ever match at the competition.
In 1985, Monday Odiaka scored after only 14 seconds against Canada in a group phase match, which remains a record.
At the same tournament, reserve goalkeeper Christian Obi thwarted host nation Soviet Union in the penalty shoot-out of the third place match to hand the bronze medals to Nigeria.
Four years later, Christopher Ohenhen’s bullet-like free kick that gave Nigeria a 2-1 win over host nation Saudi Arabia was the competition’s 500th goal.
Few days later, midfielder Christopher Nwosu’s blistering run and shot in the last minute earned a 1-1 draw with old Czechoslovakia in the final group phase match and took Nigeria to the knock –out stage.
In the quarter finals, the Flying Eagles came back from 0-4 down to defeat the same old Soviet Union after penalty shoot-out.
In 2005, in The Netherlands, Chinedu Obasi’s television goal unsettled Argentina in the final in Utrecht, but two penalty kicks by Lionel Messi gave the South Americans victory.
It is now up to coach Paul Aigbogun and his team to equal the past record or possibly surpass it.