The Dominican Republic under-20 team lost this Sunday 2-1 against the power of Nigeria, that embittered the historic debut in a soccer World Cup of the Creole team at the Malvinas Argentinas stadium in the city of Mendoza.
Edison Azcona excited the Caribbean country with a penalty awarded by the VAR in the 23rd minute, but Guillermo de Peña scored a goal into his own goal in minute 31 to leave everything the same.
In the second half, the team led by Cuban coach Walter Benítez could not resist the thrust of the Africans, who certified the comeback through Samson Lawal in minute 71.
And they could have been more if it weren’t for the outstanding performance of goalkeeper Xavier Valdez.
Nigeria thus adds its first three points in group D of this U-20 World Cup in Argentina, completed by Italy and Brazil.
The meeting was very eventful with eternal interventions of the VAR and several medical attentions. It also served to confirm the physical and tactical superiority of the ‘Super Águilas’.
Despite this, the Dominican team came out revolutionized after singing the national anthem loudly due to a technical failure on the public address system. Azcona was the beacon of his team.
The Africans put an end to that enthusiasm by opening spaces for their attacking trio made up of Lawal, Muhammad and Sunday, the latter the best in the game.
The Real Sapphire winger entered like a stiletto down the left wing. It was torture for the defenders.
Although the first to hit was Benítez’s team in a penalty committed on Guillermo de Peña. Soccer stuff. The Japanese referee Yusuke Araki did not see it, but the VAR did.
Azcona was in charge of transforming the maximum penalty and thus scoring his country’s first goal in a World Cup.
Their joy did not last long, as less than ten minutes later Guillermo de Peña returned equality with an own goal.
The tie left the Creoles very touched, who did not leave at a disadvantage at halftime thanks to Valdez’s interventions. Sunday was the big loser from the Houston Dynamo goalkeeper’s success.
The question for the second half was whether the Dominican Republic would withstand Nigeria’s push. And no, she didn’t hold on.
The second part began with a hard setback for the Super Eagles, losing their number 9 due to injury: Lawal. Nothing affected them because they continued to attack vigorously, now with Emmanuel Umeh.
The quisqueyanos, however, burned their feet with the ball. Too much precipitation. Azcona was blurred with just a good shot from outside the area and Derek Cuevas only left some quality detail.
And in those came the goal from Samsom Lawal, who took advantage of a failure from behind to put the final 2-1. The Creole team showed their faces, but it was insufficient.