Nigeria vs Iceland - Preview - World Cup 2018

Nigeria vs Iceland World Cup 2018 preview

It’s do or die for Nigeria when they come up against a brave and courageous outfit in the form of Iceland. The Super Eagles were flat in their 2-0 defeat against Croatia, while Iceland shocked the footballing world with a lionhearted performance against Argentina.   

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FIFA World Cup
Nigeria vs Iceland    
Group D
Friday 22 June 
Volgograd Arena  
17:00

To Win
Nigeria 37/20
Draw 39/20
Iceland 33/20

Nigeria  

Nigeria lacked ideas and a cutting edge on Saturday evening as Oghenekaro Etebo’s unfortunate own goal and a well-placed penalty from Luka Modric saw Croatia grab the headlines with a 2-0 victory at Russia’s Kaliningrad Stadium. 

The Super Eagles looked to have suffered with stage fright with Odion Ighalo firing their first shot on target in the 59th minute. Nigeria have enough quality players amongst them, none of which, made a massive impact last time out and a game-changing performance from this team is needed if they are to stand any chance of advancing to the next round of the competition. 

Alex Iwobi failed to impress on his World Cup debut and the 22-year-old will be raring to show off his skills. The Arsenal forward has excellent technical ability, good footwork and is more than capable of splitting defenders with his passed-down Jay-Jay Okocha skills. 

If you are a fan of Live In-Running betting, it would benefit you to know that the Super Eagles have tasted defeat in each of their last seven World Cup matches when conceding the first goal.  

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Iceland 

Iceland might be known as the tiniest nation to qualify for the World Cup but last Saturday afternoon they played without any fear of failure, holding Argentina to a well-deserved 1-1 draw to earn their first-ever point in the tournament. 

It was a solid defensive effort from the World Cup first-timers – one which not many would have expected. But after their impressive run-in at the 2016 Euro Championship, we should have known they would play with more confidence at this year’s World Cup. 

While it might have been brilliant on the defensive front, they lacked imagination going forward with Iceland failing to record a single shot in the second half of the match – something manager Heimir Hallgrimsson will surely be looking to improve. 

Gylfi Sigurdsson will be looking to get his team over the victory line and he certainly has the quality to do so. The Everton midfielder is a visionary on the football pitch and can turn defence into attack in a matter of moments.

Probable line-ups:
Nigeria: 4-2-3-1
Uzoho; Abdullahi, Troost-Ekong, Balogun, Idowu; Etebo, Ndidi; Iwobi, Mikel, Moses; Ighalo

Iceland: 4-4-2
Halldorsson; Saevarsson, Arnason, R.Sigurdsson, Magnusson; Gudmundsson, Sigurdsson, Bjarnason, Gunnarsson; Finnbogason, Sigurdarson

Prediction: Iceland Win (33/20) 
Iceland might use the same tactics against Nigeria – defend and look to catch their opponents on the break. It might sound simple but sometimes doing the basics with a bit of hard-work gets the job done. Back Iceland to come out on top with a narrow and nail-biting victory. 

Written by Aaron Crowie

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