Australia defeat Nigeria in international football (soccer) friendly
Sunday, November 18, 2007
Australia has defeated Nigeria 1-0 in a football (soccer) international friendly yesterday (UTC). The match was played at Craven Cottage in England, home of Fulham Football Club, for logistical reasons as a majority of the players are based in Europe.
The only goal of the match was scored by David Carney in the 52nd minute, playing in left midfield for the Socceroos. He scored the goal from around 30 metres out, curling the ball away from the Nigerian goalkeeper Dele Aiyenuga and into the left hand side of the net.
Carney currently plays for Sheffield United in the Football League Championship. He previously played for Sydney FC in the Australian A-League competition, but transferred to Sheffield United earlier this year.
Both teams had chances throughout the match, mainly in the first half. Nigerian goalkeeper Aiyenuga saved four shots on target in the first half, from Harry Kewell, Nick Carle, Brett Emerton and Scott McDonald.
Nigeria's best chance of the game was also in the first half. Ayo Makinwa's shot from ten metres out deflected off a defender, wrong-footing Australian goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer. However, Schwarzer managed to scramble and adjust his body positioning to parry the ball with one hand onto the crossbar and away from danger. Schwarzer also saved a shot on goal by Osaze Odemwingie, diving down to his left.
The match served as a warm-up for the Australian team before their campaign to qualify for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. This will be the first time the Australian national team has attempted to qualify for the World Cup through the Asian Football Confederation, having moved from the Oceania Football Confederation at the start of 2006 after qualifying for the 2006 FIFA World Cup.
- Australian Associated Press. "We need our coach now - Socceroos" — , November 17, 2007