Benin Republic secured a slim 1-0 win over Nigeria in the first leg CHAN qualifier played in Cotonou on Sunday evening.
CHAN Eagles’ Afeez Aremu committed a foul in the 89th minute. That gifted Benin Republic a late penalty which they converted to beat Nigeria by a lone goal in the first leg clash.
The Beninoise began the game stronger. But despite their early domination, they hardly created any real chances to hurt the home-based Super Eagles team.
As the Nigeria team settled into the game, they did try to attack their hosts but they failed to convert chances as the first half ended goalless.
Nigeria seized the initiative in the second half but they still failed to bury the chances they created.
While it was looking like the game will end in a draw, a foul in the 89th minute from Aremu, who lost possession and in his bid to regain the ball, brought down a Beninoise player resulted in a penalty kick.
The Francophone country made the most of the late chance as CHAN Eagles skipper Ikechukwu Ezenwa was well beaten from the spot and the game ended 1-0 in favour of Benin Republic.
The home-based Eagles will hope to turn the table in the second leg, which comes up next weekend in Kano.