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The Super Eagles of Nigeria lost 2-0 to World Cup-bound Los Ticos of Costa Rica on Thursday morning at a packed Estadio Nacional de Costa Rica Stadium in San Jose.
A largely home-based team led by Coach Salisu Yusuf conceded once in each half to condemn Nigeria’s senior national football team to a sixth loss in 2022.

Oscar Duarte scored the first goal in the eighth minute after a free kick from former Arsenal forward Joel Campbell took out the Nigerian defence and it was left to Duarte to poke the ball past Kayode Bankole, who started in goal for the Eagles.

Dominion Ohaka went close to securing an equaliser for the Eagles in the 17th minute after he drove into the Costa Rica box but his left-footed effort was just wide

A sweeping Costa Rica move in the 64th almost resulted in the second goal. Joel Campbell exchanged passes with Bryan Ruiz, before releasing Alvaro Zamora. The Deportivo Saprissa midfielder drove into the box but blasted his shot off target.

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The second half was a bitty affair as tackles flew from both sides. Ejeh Isaiah was shown a yellow card for a crude challenge on Carlos-Manuel Martinez in the 70th minute.

Kendall Watson scored the second after a well-worked corner kick routine freed Campbell down the line and crossed for Watson, who overpowered Sunday Faleye and Daniel Wotlia, to head past Bankole for the Ticos’ second goal in the 74th minute.

The Eagles have one more friendly game in 2022, against the Portugal team on 17 November in Lisbon.

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