Bosnia bow out after defeat to Nigeria

14:23, Jun 22 2014
Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi of Argentina celebrates after scoring his team's second goal during the Group F match between Argentina and Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Argentina fan
Argentina fans wait for the Group F match between Argentina and Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Maracana
A general view of the stadium during the Group F match between Argentina and Bosnia-Herzegovina at Maracana.
Challenge
Senad Lulic of Bosnia and Herzegovina challenges Lucas Biglia of Argentina.
Goal
Bosnia-Herzegovina's Vedad Ibisevic scores through the legs of Argentina's Sergio Romero.
Messi goal
Argentina's Lionel Messi scores a goal past Bosnia-Herzegovina's goalkeeper Asmir Begovic.
Contest
Nigeria's Ogenyi Onazi fights for the ball with Iran's Reza Ghoochannejhad.
Battle
Iran's Ehsan Hajsafi and Nigeria's Peter Odemwingie jump for the ball.
Up and Over
Vincent Enyeama of Nigeria makes a save over teammate Joseph Yobo and Ashkan Dejagah of Iran.
John Obi Mikel
John Obi Mikel of Nigeria controls the ball against Reza Ghoochannejhad of Iran.
Tackle
Peter Odemwingie of Nigeria falls after a challenge by Andranik Teymourian of Iran.
Iran fans
Supporters hold up the Iran flag.
Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi celebrates his stoppage-time goal as Argentina defeated Iran 1-0.
Angel di Maria
Argentina's Angel di Maria takes a corner kick against Iran.
Ashkan Dejagah
Iran's Ashkan Dejagah reacts after missing a scoring chance.
Javier Mascherano Ashkan Dejagah
Argentina's Javier Mascherano (right) challenges Iran's Ashkan Dejagah for possession.
Lionel Messi and Angel di Maria
Lionel Messi and Angel di Maria cut a frustrated pair as Argentina struggle to score against Iran.
Marcos Rojo and  Reza Ghoochannejhad
Argentina's Marcos Rojo trips Iran's Reza Ghoochannejhad as he attempts to get the ball.
Peter Odemwingie
Nigeria's Peter Odemwingie celebrates scoring his goal against Bosnia at the Pantanal Arena in Cuiaba.
Peter Odemwingie
Nigeria's Peter Odemwingie scores past Bosnia and Herzegovina goalkeeper and club team-mate Asmir Begovic.
Senad Lulic
Nigeria's Peter Odemwingie and Bosnia's Senad Lulic contest possession.
Edin Dzeko
Nigeria's matchwinner Peter Odemwingie is challenged by Bosnia's Senad Lulic.
Edin Dzeko
Bosnia's Edin Dzeko, left, scores a disallowed goal past Nigeria's goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama.
Vedad Ibisevic
Bosnia's Vedad Ibisevic reacts to a missed chance against Nigeria in their crucial Group F clash.
Marcos Rojo
Marcos Rojo celebrates his match-winning goal, scored off his knee, in Argentina's 3-2 victory over Nigeria.
Bosnia-Herzegovina
Bosnia-Herzegovina players celebrate after their second goal in a 3-1 victory over Iran.
Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi collides with Nigeria's Ogenyi Onazi as he controls the ball in Argentina's group match win.
Vincent Enyeama
Nigeria's Vincent Enyeama makes a save against Argentina.
Juwon Oshaniwa and Ricardo Alvarez
Juwon Oshaniwa of Nigeria and Ricardo Alvarez of Argentina lay on the ground after colliding.
Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi prepares to take a free-kick as the referee marks the spot.
Ahmed Musa
Nigerian players celebrate Ahmed Musa's goal.
Toni Sunjic and Muhamed Besic
Edin Dzeko of Bosnia-Herzegovina (right) helps team-mate Toni Sunjic after a collision with Muhamed Besic.
Alireza Hughighi
Iranian goalkeeper Alireza Hughighi is consoled by a member of the training staff after losing to Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Avdija Vrsajevic
Bosnia-Herzegovina's Avdija Vrsajevic pumps his fist after scoring his country's third goal against Iran.
Ashkan Dejagah
Iran's Ashkan Dejagah is surrounded by Toni Sunjic, Tino Sven Susic and Miralem Pjanic of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Reza Ghoochannejhad
Iran's Reza Ghoochannejhad scores his side's only goal past Bosnia-Herzegovina keeper Asmir Begovic.

Nigeria eliminated Bosnia-Herzegovina from World Cup contention with a 1-0 win over the tournament newcomers today, with Peter Odemwingie's first-half goal getting the African champions closer to the knockout stage.

Odemwingie sealed Nigeria's first victory at a World Cup since 1998 - spanning 10 matches - by finishing from close range in the 29th minute after one of a string of powerful runs by fellow striker Emmanuel Emenike.

Bosnia faded after a bright start, during which star striker Edin Dzeko had a goal contentiously disallowed for offside, and remain without a point in Group F following a 2-1 defeat to Argentina in their opener.

A draw would have given the Bosnians something to play for in its last group match, against Iran, but Dzeko had a shot tipped onto the post by goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama in the final few seconds, ending their hopes.

Nigeria need a point against Argentina on Thursday to be guaranteed a spot in the round of 16 - and a surprise win would secure top spot in the group.

With Africa's five teams starting the World Cup with just one win from their first eight matches, the continent was able to enjoy a rare success in Brazil.

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There had also been added motivation for Stephen Keshi's team, which was seeking to boost the spirits of Nigerians back home in the wake of a suicide bombing attack at a World Cup viewing site in the northeast of their country. At least 14 people died in the blast.

Nigeria were too strong and experienced for the Bosnians, whose soft centre in defence failed to deal with the power of Emenike in energy-sapping conditions in the western Brazilian city of Cuiaba.

And the recall of Odemwingie, who was impressive as a substitute in the 0-0 draw with Iran, gave Nigeria an extra goal threat - demonstrated by his calm finish.

Emenike powered past the tame challenge of Bosnia defender Emir Spahic and charged down the right flank before crossing for Odemwingie, who shot first-time through the legs of goalkeeper Asmir Begovic - his team-mate at English club Stoke.

By that stage, Bosnia-Herzegovina should have been ahead, with Dzeko finding the net in the 21st minute only for the goal to be ruled out for offside. Replays appeared to show Dzeko was level with the last defender.

Otherwise, Dzeko's finishing was off-key and with their star striker struggling, the Bosnians looked disheartened in the early stages of the second half.

Begovic kept his team in the game with saves from Michael Babatunde and Emenike before Bosnia-Herzegovina's late rally created a good chance, Dzeko turning his marker in a crowded penalty area and side-footing a shot that was kept out by Enyeama. 

 

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