The Greek national team celebrated a historic moment with a 2:1 win against the team of Nigeria. The joy of the national team, of the fans on the Free State Stadium stadium and all of Greece is really enormous. This is the first victory of the Greek national team in the World Cup. Moreover, the success came immediately after the failure of the match with South Korea and the almost lost hopes for success. The serious criticism, which scattered the team of Greece “drove” all the forces of the players and in the game on Free State Stadium the team showed a new, fantastic image. The game of the Greeks this time was filled with zeal and...spate of attacks. The match itself was generally very dynamic and offered strong emotions, often even “heart breaking” situations.
The game began with visible tension for both teams. And Nigeria, and Greece were aiming to score a quick goal and unlock the game. Nigerians, however, were the more offensive team in the first half. They “opened up” the game in the 16th minute with a goal from a free kick. The goal was scored by the forward Uche and from a distance of 35 meters. This situation has brought unpleasant emotions for the Greek team as Tzorvas “contributed” to the result, because he failed to save the ball for a ridiculous mistake. The Greeks proceeded with lightning attacks, but did not succeed to catch the result. One of the best chances to score were the two head-butts of Kyrgiakos.
The Greek team failed to fully find its rhythm by the middle of the first half. Its game was still offensive, keen to make the result equal. There was another very good chance in the 31st minute. Katsuoranis passed to Salpigidis and there was a great chance to score, but the attempt ended in failure. The Greeks made a spate of attacks after the 31st minute. The historical moment came in the 44th minute when Salpigidis drove the ball into the net of Enyeama. This was the first goal of the match with Nigeria and the first goal of Greece in the World Cup. The joy of the nationals was indescribable. The first half ended with the score 1:1.
The second half brought more joy to the Greek nationals. They stepped on the field in very good mental state and were off the net of Enyeama from the first minute. But the Nigerians did not give up to score a goal. That is precisely what made the game interesting and particularly dynamic. Uche shot again towards the net, but this time Tzorvas saved the ball. The ball was sometimes in front of Enyeama’s net, sometimes in front of Tzorvas’s net. Theses moments were “nail-biting”. Both sides missed many chances for a goal. The Nigerians have had a particularly good chance to score.
Strong point was Chinedu Obasi’s attack. This time Tzorvas coped greatly with the task and skillfully pushed the ball away. Then a series of Greek attacks followed. The second star moment came in the 25th minute. After the Tziolis’s kick the Nigerian goalkeeper pushed the ball away, but Torosidis shot it straight into the net. The result was 2:1 for Greece. The endlessly happy national team chased goal positions virtually until the 90th minute of the match.
Greece (Otto Rehhagel): Tzorvas, Tziolis, Papadopoulos, Karagounis, Vyntra, Salpigidis, Torosidis, Kyrgiakos, Gekas, Papastathopoulos (37 'Samaras), Katsouranis
Nigeria (Lars Lagerback): Vincent Enyeama, Joseph Yobo, Taye Taiwo, Danny Shittu, Yakubu Ayegbeni, Peter Odemwingie, Kalu Uche, Sani Kaita, Lukman Haruna, Chidi Odiah, Dickson Etuhu