Monday, November 2, 2015 8:35 am
In beating Brazil Sunday night in Chile, Nigeria’s Golden Eaglets are on the road to setting the record as the most successful team in the FIFA youth tournament.
The Eaglets hold the record of winning four trophies, one better than Brazil. Nigeria have also been three runners-up. Brazil is the second most successful with three titles and two runners up. Ghana and Mexico have won the tournament twice.
Last night, the Golden Eaglets also added another standalone record: reaching eight semi-finals in the U-17 World Cup.
Golden Eaglets Victor Osimhen has also entered the record books, already scoring eight goals in the tournament, a sure candidate for the Golden Boot. Germany’s Johannes Eggestein is a distant second, with four goals.
Osimhen’s goal haul is however one shy of the FIFA record of nine, set by France’s Florent Sinama Pongolie in 2001 and Ivory Coast’s Souleymane Coulibaly in 2011.
On the whole, the Nigerian team have scored the most goals in the tournament, 14 overall.
It is not just the Nigerians who are setting records, the Malians too are.
For the first time, they have also reached the semi-final of the competition and are hungry to win the trophy.
Malian goalkeeper, Samuel Diarra has also kept the cleanest sheet in the tournament: he has not conceded a goal in 290 minutes. Both at the group stage and the knock-out, Diarra has only conceded one goal, when Mali played against Ecuador at the group stage. He has also made eight saves.
Though Nigeria have the record of the most goals scored, the Malians have been the best attacking team in the tournament, according to FIFA.
They have made 114 goal attempts, scoring nine. Out of the 114 attempts, they have had 29 shots blocked and 31 saved and 45 off-target.