Ajibade’s last-gasp strike keeps Falconets’ World Cup campaign alive

Nigeria booked their place in the knockout round of the U20 Women’s World Cup with a 1-1 draw against China.

Rasheedat Ajibade struck a last-gasp goal to cancel out Zhang Linyan’s first half opener.

Christopher Danjuma’s team went into the match knowing that a draw would see them advance to the round of eight.

The game didn’t lack chances as both teams attacked each other right from the onset.

China deservedly scored the opener after Linyan dribbled past Mary Ologbosere and Opeyemi Sunday before beating goalkeeper Chiamaka Nnadozie in the 42nd minute.

After the break, Igboamalu Grace was frustrated by Xu Huan who made a good save from her header before substitute, Anam Imo, missed a scoring opportunity from close range.

Nigeria had a glorious chance to level matters 15 minutes from time when Peace Efih cut inside the box and hit the ball into the waiting arms of Huan.

In the 86th minute, Wang Yanwen curled a spectacular effort towards the top corner but Nnadozie made a world class save to thwart her.

Minutes later, substitute Aishat Bello latched on to a timely goal-line clearance and crossed low to the advancing Ajibade who poked home in the dying minutes of the game.