Japan National Football Team Vs Ecuador National Football Team Matches latest 2023

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The Amazing Story of the Nigeria Olympic Dream Team

Dream Team One were coached by Dutchman Johannes Bonfrere and started their way to the final with a 1-0 win over Hungary and a 2-0 victory over Japan before finishing the first round with a 1-0 defeat against enterprising Brazilians. The Africans then beat Mexico, led by eccentric goalkeeper Jorge Campos, 2-0, in the quarter-finals to set up an incredible pair of games.

Losing in the semi-finals to a formidable Brazilian side that boasted Bebeto, Ronaldo and Rivaldo, 3-1, Nigeria finally came to life in the 78th minute when Victor Ikpeba scored from 20 yards out. As time ran out, inspirational captain Nwankwo Kanu took center stage, scoring in a scramble in front of goal in the final minute to equalise. With just three minutes left in extra time, Kanu fired the match-winner 16 yards out to pull off one of the greatest comebacks in international football history in what many observers considered the greatest game in Olympic football. never disputed.

The Dream Team then staged another miraculous comeback against Argentina in the gold medal match in front of 86,117 fans at Sanford Stadium in Athens, Georgia. After 90 minutes of thrilling football, Nigeria triumphed over Argentina.

The Argentinians held a 2-1 advantage on goals from Claudio Lopez who scored via a well-taken header in the third minute and Hernan Crespo in the 50th minute via a penalty. The resilient Dream team one came back strong in the match and equalized in the 74th minute when striker Daniel Amokachi rushed in the decisive goal. With a minute remaining, super substitute Emmanuel Amuneke scored the winning goal to give Nigeria a famous 3-2 win.

It was a momentous day in Nigerian football history as the international football community celebrated a rare feat by an African team.

dream team two

With the completion of Dream Team I in Atlanta in 1996, the pressure was on Dream Team 2 to live up to expectations at the Olympic Games held in 2000 in the beautiful city of Sydney, Australia.

The team did not lack quality players, since they had in their fold: Victor Agali, Yakubu Aiyegbeni, Garba Lawal and Celestine Babayaro, but unfortunately, they were eliminated in the quarter-finals. In their first game, Dream team two drew 3-3 with Honduras, before beating Australia 3-2 in their second game. They drew 1-1 with Italy, to set up a fascinating quarter-final clash with Chile. It was a meeting that revealed the insufficiency of dream team two, as they were humiliated 4-1 by an inspired Chilean side.

Nigeria Dream Team Three-Dreams Never Last Forever

The dream was extinguished in 2004, when the Nigerian Olympic football team then known as: The Dream team three, failed to make it through the African qualifiers. Tunisia qualified for Athens 2004 at the expense of Nigeria’s Dream Team 3 with an embarrassing 2-0 loss to Nigeria in the final group game in Tunis. The team which also represented the country at the 8th All Africa Games hosted by Nigeria fought their way to the final of the football event but lost to Cameroon 2-0, at the state-of-the-art national stadium from Abuja.

Dream Team Four-The Rebirth of the Nigerian Olympic Team

The dream was rekindled in 2008, when a group of talented footballers from the U-20 team that won silver medals at the World Youth Championship in Holland in 2005, stormed Beijing, for the Olympic football tournament. Coach Samson Siasia, one of Nigeria’s top youth coaches, led them to the Olympics. Alongside heavyweights like the Netherlands, Japan and the United States in Group B, the Dream team Four began their Olympic football campaign with a 0-0 draw against the Netherlands, before bouncing back to register a 2-1 win over morale. Japan. They confirmed their superiority in the group with another 2-1 victory over the United States. Ivory Coast lost to coach Samson Siasia’s side in the quarter-finals after suffering a 2-0 loss.

The semi-final duo saw the best outing of Dream team Four, as they went on a rampage against an ill-fated Belgian side who were desperately trying to contain the raging Nigerians. The encounter ended 4-1 in favor of Nigeria, and the die was once again cast for a mouth-watering encounter between Nigeria and arch-rivals Argentina. It was a repeat of the 2005 U-20 World Cup held in the Netherlands, as the main players were still very present on both sides. Revenge was what the Nigerians were singing about, and they had little Lionel Messi to face in their quest to win Olympic football gold for the second time since 1996. It was a close encounter that was decided by a single goal scored in the 58th minute. game by Angel Di Maria from Argentina. Dream Team Four once again had to play second fiddle to an experienced Argentinian side as they lost the epic encounter 1-0.

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