Nigeria parties after landmark World Cup win
Nigeria fans
Nigeria fans cheer before the 2014 World Cup Group F soccer match between Nigeria and Bosnia at the Pantanal arena in Cuiaba June 21, 2014. (Photo:Reuters)
AFP
Sunday 22 Jun 2014
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Millions of Nigerians including President Goodluck Jonathan stayed up to celebrate after the African champions beat Bosnia to boost their chances of reaching the World Cup knockout rounds

Spontaneous victory parties broke out across the country in the early hours of Sunday morning after the Super Eagles ended a 16-year wait for a victory win at a World Cup finals.

President Jonathan popped champagne with aides at the Aso Rock Villa in the capital Abuja after the historic win, having promised to reward the side if they do well in Brazil.

Ex-Nigeria international Jonathan Akpoborie said Stephen Keshi's team deserved their victory.

"It was a good game, unlike the game against Iran, they got a lot of spaces because Bosnia came to play and we countered very well," Akpoborie said.

"I have to give credit to the team, they deserved to win the game and I hope they build on this victory."

He singled out Ukraine-based Michael Babatunde, who was picked ahead of Chelsea star Victor Moses to start against Bosnia.

"Babatunde played very well against Bosnia. He was a revelation. He opened up Bosnia.

"The Bosnian team opened up the game and we were fortunate to score a very good goal created by (Emmanuel) Emenike," Akpoborie said.

Turkish-based midfielder Raheem Lawal, who was not picked for the World Cup, said the whole country should get behind the Nigerian team in Brazil.

"It was a massive game and the Eagles deserved to win. I congratulate them for the never-say-die attitude. I have hope in the team. I have been praying for the team and supporting them. I am calling on all Nigerians to do same," Lawal urged.

Nigeria will reach the round of 16 if they avoid defeat against Argentina in Porto Alegre on Wednesday.

In 1998, Nigeria beat Spain and Bulgaria to win their first round group. But they lost to Denmark in the round of 16.

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