Nigeria vs Lesotho: Kingdom nation earns draw against Africa's Powerhouse Super Eagles

Nigeria vs Lesotho: Kingdom nation earns draw against Africa's Powerhouse Super Eagles

Jarryd Westerdale
November 16, 2023 at 7:19 PM
  • Nigeria hosted the tiny mountain Kingdom of Lesotho in their opening 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifier
  • The Super Eagles were expected to trounce their opponent with the force of Victor Boniface
  • Zimbabwe will be the next to challenge Jose Pereiros'men in their own backyard

African footballing superpowered, Nigeria have been held to a draw by a landlocked mountain Kingdom.

Lesotho where overwhelming underdogs going into the opening round of the 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers but have emerged with a point.

The result will be a massive incentive for the remainder of the group rivals which include Benin, Rwanda and South Africa.

Semi Ajayi, Nigeria, Leostho, 1-1.
Semi Ajayi scored Nigeria's only goal against Lesotho as they drew 1-1 in their opening 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifier. Photo:@NGSuperEagles.
Source: Twitter

The match was played at Godswill Akpabio Stadium which has been a fortress for the Super Eagles.

Shortly before kick-off, former Super Eagles goalkeeper, Peter Rugai stated that there are no more minnows in African football. He told Sports Brief:

"There is no doubt, there are no small teams anymore because of the development of technology."

This would prove prophetic as the Crocodiles would shock Nigeria 10 minutes into the first half when Lesotho Motlomelo Mkhwanazi.

Placed on the back foot but with plenty of time to spare, Nigeria were forced to respond. Within 10 minutes of the goal, Nigeria scored from a corner thanks to West Bromwich Albion's Semi Ajayi.

The 1-1 draw places great importance on Nigeria's match with Zimbabwe as every point in the qualifying rounds will be vital.

Every point dropped allows for other teams to close in and Nigeria will not want South Africa breathing down their neck at too early a stage.

The Super Eagles will now want to restore order against Zimbabwe on Sunday Afternoon.

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Ex-Eagles demand positive start

Sports Brief recently reported on former Super Eagles striker Peter Ijeh's message for the players.

A former Nigerian international urged the Super Eagles to begin the 2026 FIFA World qualifiers on a flying note.

He cautioned that Lesotho and Zimbabwe would not be a stroll in the park for Jose Peseiro's team.

Jarryd Westerdale photo
Jarryd Westerdale
Jarryd Westerdale (based in Johannesburg) joined Sports Brief after four years in the community journalism sphere. He is a two-time Alet Roux Award winner and was a finalist in multiple categories at the Forum of Community Journalism Excellence Awards.
NigeriaNigeria Football Federation (NFF)World Cup