Tuesday, July 23, 2024
HomeAfrican FootballNigeria & Zim Suffer Setbacks Ahead Of Bafana Clashes

Nigeria & Zim Suffer Setbacks Ahead Of Bafana Clashes

Nigeria and Zimbabwe have both lost their final friendly matches before facing South Africa in the upcoming 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.

The Warriors, who are ranked 124th in the world, lost to 111th-ranked Kenya in a feisty affair that saw former Kaizer Chiefs defender Teenage Hadebe sent off after 56 minutes.

The game was still locked at 1-1 at the time after an own goal by Joseph Okumu had given Zim an early lead in the fourth minute.

However, Michael Olunga equalised in first-half injury-time before adding his second in the 63rd minute to give Kenya the lead.

Just 10 minutes later, Kenya also had a player sent off, when Richard Odada received his marching orders.

Olunga, though, completed his hat-trick in the 87th minute to hand Kenya the win in a game that also saw Warriors coach, Norman Mapeza also sent off.

It was Zimbabwe’s second game during the international break after they drew 2-2 with Zambia before beating them 6-5 on penalties.

Meanwhile, Nigeria lost 2-0 to Mali on Tuesday evening. The Super Eagles, who are coached by interim boss Finidi George went behind after 18 minutes when El Bilal Toure opened the scoring before Kamory Doumbia scored the second in the 86th minute.

Nigeria had beaten Ghana 2-1 in their other friendly this window. Chippa United goalkeeper Stanley Nwabali featured in both matches.

The Super Eagles, who have picked up two points in South Africa’s World Cup qualifying froup so far after being held to 1-1 draws by Lesotho and Zimbabwe, will host Bafana on 3 June.

Just a few days later, Hugo Broos’ men will host Zimbabwe, who also sit on two points from two matches, while Bafana have picked up three against Benin before their shock defeat in Rwanda.

David Kappel
David Kappel
David Kappel has served as a renowned international editor and content manager for almost a decade. David specialises in ensuring content and social media posts are highly engaging for football fans and was previously the international editor at Soccer Laduma. He is currently the iDiski Times website editor and social strategist.