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Nigeria vs Iceland.

FIFA World Cup Group D.

Nigeria 2

  • A Musa (49th minute, 75th minute)

Iceland 0

    Nigeria v Iceland preview: Iceland aim for World Cup Group D win

    Friday 22 June 2018 17:47, UK

    Nigeria v Iceland

    After holding Argentina to a surprise draw, Iceland are hoping to make it four points in World Cup Group D against Nigeria at the Volgograd Arena on Friday (4pm BST).

    Iceland are buoyant after their shock result against Argentina where Lionel Messi saw a potentially match-winning penalty saved by Hannes Halldorsson.

    Nigeria, meanwhile, lost their opening match 2-0 to Croatia and Iceland boss Heimir Hallgrimsson expects the Super Eagles to come out firing.

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    "This is a must-win game for Nigeria and that makes it a little bit psychologically different, they have to win," he said.

    "This group is going to be decided in the last minutes, in the last game. It's going to be down to some margins, a set piece, a goal in injury time. This is how this group is going to be played."

    Two Iceland fans have driven all the way to Russia from Iceland after winning a World Cup-themed car.

    If Nigeria lose, they would become the third African side after Morocco and Egypt to be dumped out after just two group matches.

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    Head coach Gernot Rohr hit back at a reporter when asked if a loss might see his job on the line.

    "We will not lose this game so I do not answer this question. You can ask this question again after the game, but I will tell you we will not lose," he said.

    Iceland's Alfred Finnbogason celebrates after scoring his team's first goal
    Image: Iceland's Alfred Finnbogason celebrates after scoring against Argentina

    Team news

    Hallgrimsson has revealed that winger Johann Berg Gudmundsson isn't expected to recover in time to play.

    Gudmundsson tore his calf muscle in Iceland's 1-1 draw against Argentina.

    Leicester's Ahmed Musa could start for Nigeria after coming off the bench in their opening game.

    Ahead of Nigeria's World Cup clash against Iceland, we take a look at Victor Moses following an impressive couple of seasons at Chelsea

    Opta stats

    There has only been one previous meeting between Nigeria and Iceland, with the European side winning 3-0 in a friendly in August 1981.

    All five of Nigeria's wins at the World Cup have been against European sides.

    Iceland drew their first ever World Cup game when they met Argentina. The last side to avoid defeat in both of their first two World Cup games were Senegal in 2002, while Croatia in 1998 were the last European side to do so.

    After recording eight shots against Argentina in the first half of their first match, Iceland failed to register a single attempt on goal in the second 45 minutes.

    Nigeria have lost each of their last three World Cup games. They last had a longer run of defeats in the competition between 1998 and 2002 (four games).

    Merson's prediction

    Iceland are one of the best around at setting up not to be beaten - but they'll need to go out and win this match. If they win this then Argentina could be in a bit of bother depending on results. I've got to go for Iceland as Nigeria were awful against Croatia.

    PAUL PREDICTS: 0-1 (5/1 with Sky Bet)


    Iceland are slight Sky Bet favourites at 17/10 to win their tie with Nigeria, who are 9/5 to claim their first points of the tournament, with the draw at 21/10. Leicester's Kelechi Iheanacho and ex-Watford striker Odion Ighalo are the most favoured to open the scoring for Nigeria at 5/1 apiece, with Alfred Finnbogason marginally shorter at 9/2 to break the deadlock for Iceland. Nigeria are at 750/1 to win this summer's World Cup with Iceland slightly shorter at 250/1.

    You can bet with Sky Bet by clicking here.

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