Daily Trust (Abuja)

Nigeria: Eagles Retain Copa Lagos

Nigeria's Supersand Eagles yesterday retained their Copa Lagos Beach Soccer Worldwide crown by beating Portugal in the final played at the Eko Atlantic Beach Soccer Stadium.

The Supersand Eagles edged Portugal's Seleccao das Quinas 8-7 but had to finish off the job in extra time after the three periods ended 7-7.

The Nigerians won all three of their games at the four-team invitational tournament in Lagos.

It was fast and furious at the Eko Atlantic Beach Soccer between both teams, as Bartholomew Ibenegbu thought he had put Nigeria ahead with a screamer that found the net before the referee blew for an infringement.

Within two minutes of the first period, Ogbonnaya Okemmiri out of nothing scored from a defensive challenge that caught Portugal goalkeeper, Paulo Graca out of position to give Nigeria a 1-0 lead.

A minute later, Graca tries a long range from his goal and Supersand Eagles keeper, Oladapo Olalekan tipped it over.

Nigeria captain, Isiaka Olawale and Ibenegbu later combined with the latter's effort hitting the post before Graca gathered the ball.

Jordan Santos then nodded goal-bound but Olalekan pushed his effort away to safety.

In the space of two minutes, Jose Maria scored twice via two overhead kicks to hand Portugal a 2-1 lead.

Kwara United striker, Abu Azeez put the score even before Bruno Torres' low free kick from almost the halfway put Portugal 3-2 in front.

A minute to end the first period, Rui Coimbra dribbled through a forest of Nigerian legs and slipped the ball into the far corner with Olalekan helpless as Portugal raced into a 4-2 lead.

Straight from kick off in the second period, Marinho Dante scored to give Portugal three goals clear.

In the space of ten seconds, Marinho was the scorer at the other end off Victor Tale's effort as Nigeria closed the gap to two goals.

Jordan later did well to get away from Tale and then curled the ball into the top corner to restore Portugal's three-goal lead.

Bruno Novo put Portugal 7-3 up by scoring from the near post off a corner kick, as Olalekan could only push it into his own goal.

With three minutes to end the second period, Ibenegbu picked out Olawale on the left and he expertly side-stepped the ball past Carlos to cut down Portugal's lead to three.

Tale scored with over a minute left in the period off a corner kick to put the score at 5-7.

And the third period began on breakneck speed with Azeez netting his fifth goal of Copa Lagos to become the leading scorer.

Four minutes to the final period, Coimbra's short pass led to Graca upending Badmus Babatunde, who calmly converted the resultant spot kick to put the game at 7-7 to send the game into extra time.

In extra time, Ibenegbu put the icing on the cake as Nigeria went 8-7 up.

Last year, the Supersand Eagles defeated Brazil to emerge the inaugural winners of the Copa Lagos.

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