The Super Eagles B were on Tuesday night beaten 3-2 by Atletico Madrid in the GOtv Max Cup played at the Godwill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo. Eagles lost in spite of the spirited effort they displayed as the new Europa Champions were not ready leave Nigeria beaten.
Thomas Partey told reporters that Atletico’s philosophy of taking every game like a cup final helped them to win.
Nigeria fielded the likes of Kelechi and Chidiebere Nwakali, Emem Eduok and Femi Thomas while the Spanish club paraded Jan Oblak, Juanfran, Thomas Party, Fernando Torres and Kevin Gameiro amongst others.
Arsenal youngster Nwakali and Rio 2016 Olympic bronze medal winner Usman Mohammed got Nigeria’s goals with Mohammed scoring the goal of the game. Angel Correa, Fernando Torres and Borja Garces were the scorers for Atletico.
Eagles took the lead in the 32 minute through Arsenal youngster Nwakali whose screamer flew past Oblak into the top corner and Atletico responded a minute later through Correa with a wonderful strike to make it 1-1 through the first half.
Before the commencement of the second half, Atletico made five changes with Fernando Torres among the players brought on.
Atletico’s positive start to the second half eventually paid off as Torres headed in a cross on 64 minutes to put his side 2-1 up.
Eagles were back on level terms with 10 minutes remaining as substitute Mohammed made it 2-2 after brilliantly beating his marker but in the 85th minute Borja made it 3-2 for Atletico.
Atletico and Ghana midfielder Thomas Partey admitted that the Los Rojiblancos respected their opponents and needed their wealth of experience to defeat Eagles B team. Partey said that Atletico’s philosophy of not underrating any opponents helped them secure the victory.
“It was a very good game and their fans were behind them which made them grow well into the game,” the Ghana international said during his post-match interview.
“We did the right thing and we were able to get the victory. They are a good side. We have a philosophy of not underrating any team which helped us tonight.”