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14 Dec 2014
The Ivory Coast leaves Lagos as champions
Nigeria, 2nd, and the Ivory Coast, 1st take care of business against Senegal and Ghana to finish tournament with big wins
Nigeria holds off Senegal for 2nd place
The 5-4 win for Nigeria over Senegal was so exciting that the stadium seemed like it was going to implode. The energy was high from the beginning but the two sides played a see-saw battle that is becoming normal at the Copa Lagos. The win was the second of the event for the hosts, Nigeria, and they finished in second place in this highly competitive field of African champions. Senegal finished in third place following losses to the top two teams in the event, Nigeria, and the Ivory Coast on day 1.
Speed was abundant in the opening minutes of the match as both teams looked dead set on scoring first and the tension could have been cut with a knife. The pressure shifted to Nigeria as they missed a penalty kick wide, that led straight to a transition goal for Senegal early in the first period. Nigeria eased the home crowds’ worries with a great goal of their own to level the score at 1. The teams could not be held down and both scored again, however, The Sand Eagles scored twice more and took an unsafe 3-2 lead into the first break. That lead was quickly erased in the middle frame as the Lions of the Teranga scored their third of the match to knot the score at 3. The Sand Eagles took nearly the entire period to find their next goal but they did, as the period wound down and they took a 4-3 lead into the final frame.
Neither team wanted to budge and the final period showed that as the offenses did not open up like they had earlier in the match, because they did not want to leave their defenses vulnerable. The tactic was perfect for the Nigerians, who were leading, but the Senegalese team needed a goal to tie the match. The equalizer came before the midway point to put the score at 4, and create an even wilder atmosphere on and off the pitch. The rivalry only intensified as Nigeria took the lead again, late in the match, at 5-4. That goal proved to be enough as the Nigerians hung on for the 5-4 win.
Goals: 0-1: Faye, min. 8 (1); 1-1: Olawale, min. 5 (1); 2-1: Okemmiri, min. 2 (1); 2-2: Sylla, min. 1 (1); 3-2: Badmus, min. 0 (1); 3-3: Thioune, min. 8 (2); 4-3: Emmanuel, min. 1 (2); 4-4: Fall, min. 7 (3); 5-4: Abu, min. 4 (3).
The Ivory Coast finishes as undefeated champ
The 9-4 win for the Ivory Coast over Ghana was very thorough and showed how dominant The Elephants can be, and how exciting the game itself always is. The game was hardly in doubt, however the quality of play was high and defense along with offense were evident. The win means that the Ivory Coast will hold the Copa Lagos crown for at least another year as they already dethroned the hosts, who had never lost at the previous three editions of the event. The loss for Ghana was their third in three matches and puts them in fourth place, but each match was tight and they will surely use this as a springboard for future important events.
The Ivory Coast had already secured first place in the prestigious tournament, however they did not look complacent. Ghana began the match taking more chances, and their level of the play the entire weekend reflected a team on the rise, but initially neither side was able to hit the back of the onion bag. The games’ first goal came from an unlikely source, the goalie, as the Ivory Coast got on the board as the opening frame was closing and the teams went into the middle frame with The Elephants up 1-0 over The Black Stars. The middle period began and ultimately ended with a flurry of goals, most for the Ivory Coast though, and the frame ended with a score of 5-1 for The Elephants.
Goals continued in the opening seconds of the final period, the second of the day for Daniel and 6th for the Ivory Coast, put them up 6-1. The seventh goal came shortly after that from Tchetche, a rocket that most goalies in the world would be hard-pressed to stop. In an offensive clinic, the Ivory Coast kept on scoring, inflating their lead to 8-1 before the midway point in the closing frame. The Ghanaians tried to close the gap and scored two goals late in the frame, but in between the goals, the Ivory Coast nailed home another, putting the score at 9-3.
Goals: 1-0: Enam, min. 0 (1); 2-0: Kabletchi, min. 10 (2); 2-1: Ofori, min. 10 (2); 3-1: Daniel, min. 8 (2); 4-1: Diomande, min. 3 (2); 5-1: Kablan, min. 0 (2); 6-1: Daniel, min. 11 (3); 7-1: Tchetche, min. 9 (3); 8-1: Kablan, min. 8 (3); 8-2: Ofori, min. 7 (3); 9-2: Kablan, min. 5 (3); 9-3: Lamptey, min. 4 (3); 9-4: Lamptey, min. 0 (3).
Slow start but strong finish gives FC Barcelona win
The Catalan club scored first but were not their normal dominating selves, and Enyimba FC fought hard in the friendly match to claw back into the match, getting to within one goal, but a late charge by Barça put them up by four goals late in the match. The Nigerian club proved to be a thorn in Barcelona’s side, pressing and trying to bully the legendary club, but when the final buzzer sounded, FC Barcelona had pulled away with an 9-2 win.
Goals: 1-0: Llorenç, min. 7 (1); 2-0: Ramacciotti, min. 4 (1); 2-1: Isiaka, min. 4 (1); 3-1: Raul Merida, min. 1 (1); 3-2: Ogbonna, min. 4 (2); 4-2: Ramacciotti, min. 2 (2); 5-2: Llorenç, min. 11 (3); 6-2: Nico, min. 10 (3); 7-2: Ramacciotti, min. 3 (3); 8-2: Nico, min. 0 (3); 9-2: Llorenç, min. 0 (3).
Winner: Ivory Coast
3rd Place: Senegal
4th Place: Ghana
Best Goalkeeper: Enam (Ivory Coast)
Top-Scorer: Daniel (Ivory Coast)
MVP: Daniel (Ivory Coast)