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Nigeria vs. Iran ends in scoreless draw

Opening play in Group F, Nigeria and Iran played to a listless, 0-0 draw, the first of its kind in the 2014 World Cup at the Arena de Baixada.
June 16, 2014 at 5:15 PM  |  Updated June 16, 2014 at 9:00 PM   |   Comments

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Opening play in Group F, Nigeria and Iran played to a listless, 0-0 draw, the first of its kind in the 2014 World Cup at the Arena de Baixada.

Despite a few early chances for the Super Eagles, there was nothing to split the teams on the scoreboard after the first half of play. Nigeria spent more time on the attack and generated better chances, outshooting Iran 5-2, but only two of those shots forced keeper Alireza Haghighi to make saves.

Both teams subbed on forwards in the second half and attempted to open up play with stretch passes, though very few of those were successful in setting up legitimate scoring opportunities.

Nigeria's last-ditch effort to grab the win came in the 90th minute on a promising cross to the back post, which was narrowly headed away by the Iranian defense.

Though the Super Eagles controlled some 69 percent of possession in the game, they squandered most of it, connecting on just seven percent of their crosses. Seven corners also failed to lead to a tally.

Though both teams probably envisioned getting the important three points from the matchup, this result will make it much more difficult for either to emerge from the group, which also features Argentina and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Iran's next match comes June 21 against heavily-favored Argentina, while Nigeria will take on Bosnia-Herzegovina later that day.

[SportsNetwork.com]

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