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Eagles round off World Cup preparations with defeat to US

Eagles round off World Cup preparations with defeat to US
June 08
03:11 2014

Nigeria will head to Brazil having failed to win any of their three pre-tournament friendlies, following a 1-2 loss to Team USA  at EverBank Field.

Saturday night’s loss was preceded by draws with Scotland and Greece.

Victor Moses earned a penalty after good work by Emmanuel Emenike in the 86th minute, and converted for a consolation goal for Nigeria.

But that was after Jozy Altidore broke his long-drawn-out goal-scoring drought with a brace scored over two halves.

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Altidore scored his first goal in 2014 for club or country just after the half-hour mark, tapping in Fabian Johnson’s low cross, while he added a second after half-time to ensure the USA completed their FIFA World Cup preparations with three wins from as many games.

Altidore had also been poor for Sunderland last season, scoring just two goals in 39 appearances in all competitions.

But the powerful striker was clinical against Nigeria on Saturday, scoring both goals as the USA celebrated goalkeeper Tim Howard’s 100th cap in style.

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Both coaches made changes for their final pre-World Cup friendly, Klinsmann choosing to play all three of Michael Bradley, Kyle Beckerman and Jermaine Jones in midfield for just the second time in his tenure.

For Nigeria, coach Stephen Keshi promoted Joseph Yobo, Juwon Oshaniwa, Ramon Azeez and Shola Ameobi from the starting line-up against Greece on Tuesday, replacing Elderson Echiejile, Kenneth Omeruo, Ahmed Musa and Emmanuel Emenike.

US  will begin their World Cup campaign against Ghana on June 16, while Nigeria will play Iran on the same day.

United States: Howard, Johnson, Cameron, Besler, Beasley, Bradley, Beckerman, Jones, Dempsey, Bedoya, Altidore.

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Goals: Altidore 32′, Altidore 68′.

Nigeria: Enyeama, Oshaniwa, Yobo, Ambrose, Oboabona, Azeez, Mikel, Moses, Onazi, Osaze, Ameobi.

Goals: Moses 86′

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