Nigeria defeated Cameroon 3-2 in a thrilling Round of 16 fixture at the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations.
A brace from Odion Ighalo and Alex Iwobi’s strike were enough for the Super Eagles to see off the reigning African champions at the Alexandria Stadium on Saturday.
The encounter, as expected, started as a physical contest but Nigeria had the better chances in the opening minutes.
The breakthrough came in the 19th through Odion Ighalo’s effort which was deflected to the back of Andre Onana’s net.
After breaking the deadlock, Nigeria lost control of the game and Clarence Seedorf’s men started plying the pressure for an equaliser.
In the 24th minute, Clinton Njie benefitted by a defensive slip and then passed to Pierre Kunde, but the Mainz 05 midfielder blasted his effort wide off the post.
Three minutes later, Pierre Kunde was punished for a late and reckless tackle on Oghenekaro Etebo.
Cameroon’s push for an equaliser finally paid off in the 41st minute, with Stephane Bahoken slotting Bassogog’s cross past Daniel Akpeyi.
The situation turned soar for Nigeria as Njie fired the Indomitable Lions into the lead a minute before the half-time break.
Nigeria had won six AFCON matches in a row prior to their shock defeat against Madagascar in their previous outing and they made a bright start before the first of Ighalo’s goals 19 minutes in.
A cross to the back post was scuffed across goal by Kenneth Omeruo and Ighalo was in the right place to divert it past Andre Onana with the help of a deflection.
Cameroon turned the game on its head as half-time approached, however, with Bahoken playing a key part in the turnaround.
The Angers striker volleyed home from six yards to make it 1-1 after being picked out by Christian Bassogog and he then flicked a long ball on for N’Jie to slot past Daniel Akpeyi.
But three-time winners Nigeria showed character of their own to get themselves back on level terms through Ighalo’s cool first-time finish from eight yards and Iwobi showed just as much composure to beat Onana.
Ighalo was denied a hat-trick by a fine save 14 minutes from time, but Gernot Rohr’s side saw things through to secure a place in the last eight.