The Super Eagles lost their final Group D match 1 -2 to Argentina, crashing out of the 2018 Russia World Cup.
The Super Eagles needed to avoid defeat to qualify for the round of 16, but were unable to hold on at 1-1, after Victor Moses’ penalty cancelled out Lionel Messi’s opener.
Marcos Rojo’s late winner against Nigeria as they avoided an embarrassing group-stage exit.
Messi said in quotes published by Argentina’s official Twitter account.“It is marvellous to have won it in this manner. It is a deserved joy,”
“We knew God was with us and wasn’t going to let us go out. “I thank all the fans that are here, for all their sacrifice and to all those in Argentina that were always with us.
The shirt of the national team is above all else.” Argentina will need a vast improvement if they are to progress any further as they face highly fancied France in the last 16 on Saturday.
Argentina were fortunate not to concede another penalty just before 80 minutes when a headed clearance by Rojo hit off his arm, forcing the Turkish referee Cuneyt Cakir into a video review after which he did not give the spot kick.
Nigeria has played Argentina at the World Cup. Four times they’ve met in the group stage of the World Cup; four times Argentina have triumphed by the odd goal. It happened in 1994, 2002, 2010, 2014 and in Russia (2018). Last time in Brazil four years ago, it was Marcos Rojo who scored the winner in a 3-2 victory. He popped up again in the most unlikeliest position, to volley in a cross past Francis Uzoho.
Argentina snuck into the second round when Marcos Rojo broke Nigerian hearts. They’ll play France on Saturday, while Croatia will play Denmark on Sunday.