2023 Africa Cup of Nations: Stanley Nwabali named Man of the Match after heroics against South Africa

Published on: 07 February 2024

Nigeria Super Eagles goalkeeper Stanley Nwabali has been named Man of the Match after his heroics helped Nigeria reach the final of the 2023 Africa Cup of Nations.

The Chippa United goalkeeper saves two penalties in the shootout as his side emerged 4-2 winners after the game ended 1-1 after extra time.

The 27-year-old has four clean sheets at this tournament and conceded just two goals in 90 minutes.

Captain William Troost-Ekong calmly converted the penalty in a 67th minute penalty after Victor Osimhen was brought down by Mvala in the box, sending the ball into the middle of the net and outsmarting South African goalkeeper Ronwen Williams.

Although Nigeria thought they had doubled their lead with Osimhen's precise strike, VAR intervened, ruling out the goal due to a foul in the build-up play and awarding a penalty to South Africa.

Bafana Bafana capitalized on the opportunity, leveling the score 1-1 from the spot with a well-placed penalty by Teboho Mokoena.

In a tense extra time period, both teams had their chances, with South Africa even reduced to ten men after a crucial tackle led to a red card.

The match ultimately came down to penalties, where Nigeria emerged victorious with a 4-2 scoreline, thanks in part to goalkeeper Stanley Nwabili's heroics with two crucial penalty saves.

The Super Eagles will now face the winner of the second semifinal game between Ivory Coast and DR Congo.