Nigeria’s Dream Team VI ensured the country picked up silverware at the ongoing Rio Olympics by clinching bronze in the male football event.
With just a couple of hours to the end of the tournament, the most populous nation in Africa looked likely to end an embarrassing Olympic outing without a single medal.
But Samson Siasia’s lads gave the country something to cheer about by defeating Honduras 3-2 in the third-place play-off on Saturday.
Sadiq Umar’s double either side of Aminu Umar’s strike ensured Nigeria finished the competition as the third best team.
After a disappointing 2-0 defeat to Germany in the semi-final, the onus was on the Dream Team to clinch bronze ahead of Honduras who where thrashed 6-0 by Brazil.
And they did exactly that, dominating the game from start to finish in a one sided encounter.
Okechukwu Azubuike returned to the team after serving a one game suspension for picking two yellow cards – the only change to the team that lost to the Germans.
After some dangerous attacking display, the Nigerians finally got their breakthrough through Umar who tapped home from an Imoh Ezekiel cross after 34 minutes.
His namesake, Umar doubled the lead four minutes into the second half – pouncing on a rebound from a ferocious shot by skipper John Obi Mikel.
Mikel once again was instrumental as Nigeria got the third. His beautiful pass found Roma youngster, Umar, who wasted no time to score his second of the game and fourth of the competition.
Honduras however threatened in the latter stages and were rewarded by scoring two beautiful goals.
First Antony Lozano scored in the 71st minute before Marcelo Pereira’s strike four minutes from full-time.
Despite a couple of last minute chances from the Americans, the African champions held on for their first ever bronze medal in the male football event.
The country won gold medal in 1996 and silver in 2008.