Good afternoon folks! Welcome to Premium Time’s LIVE coverage of the Africa Cup Of Nations semi-finals clash between Nigeria and Mali at the Durban Stadium. It is a clash of two Eagles.
The Malian side is one Stephen Keshi, the Nigerian coach, know so well.
Keshi was coach of the Mali side between 2008 and 2010 and not much has changed in the national set-up in that time, giving him extensive knowledge of the players.
Will he be able to convert his knowledge to victory?
Follow our live commentaries of the clash. Drop your comments and predictions in the comment section, below. The first three correct predictions will win N500 worth recharge card. Predictions closes at the kick-off of second half.
Winners will be contacted via the email address used in making comments.
A dominating display by the Nigerian side. Emenike’s injury, is a scare, however.
FULL TIME: Nigeria 4-1 Mali
Dying minute strike by Diabate goes narrowly wide after the Malian strike force pounced on the Nigerian side.
3′ added onto the second half.
90′ Nigeria 4-1 Mali
Enyeama saves a shot that would have closed the gap for Mali.
Emenike down with an injury in his lap after a power shot that went wide. He is off the pitch for treatment. Not a good news for the Nigerian side who are hoping to progress to the finals.
Nigeria with 7 shorts on target. Mali 4. Malian defender, Diawara gets a yellow card for fouling Ejike Uzoenyi.
Nigeria bringing in Yobo to replace Efe Ambrose who got a yellow card in the first half.
Nigeria playing a three man defense strategy at the moment.
Emenike misses a clear chance to increase the tally for Nigeria after receiving a nice pass from Ahmed Musa, right before the goalkeeper.
Nigerian defense weakened at the moment as Malians press for more goals.
75′ Nigeria 4-1 Mali
GOOOOOOOOOOOAL!!! Diara scores for Mali.
Emenike Uzoenyi replaces brown Ideye for Nigeria.
Nigerian goalkeeper saves a strike from Samassa to help Nigeria maintain its 4-0 lead.
Sow replaces Maiga. Shortly after his entry, Sow got a yellow card.
Abubakar Atiku, Nigeria’s former vice president, tweets he’s dancing Azonto as the Nigerian side waltz their way to victory.
Nigeria unleashed its attack on Mali. Sunday MBA also on queue to score.
Ahmed Musa’s second goal cancelled by the referee.
Ahmed Musa is playing without his colorful hair.
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!!! Ahmed Musa scores. Nigeria 4-0 Mali
Raining now in the Durban stadium.
Diabate replaces Sissoko for Mali.
The Malians are hot in this second half, probing the Nigerian defense for a goal.
Victor Moses out, ahmed Musa in.
Emenike down on the pitch but Malians hesitate to play out the ball for fair play.
Second half starts. It is Keita with a smoking goal scoring opportunity, missed narrowly. Goal kick for Nigeria. Victor Moses off the pitch for minor treatment.
Nigeria’s Emenike currently leads the top goal scorer’s table with 4 goals.
Stephen Keshi is definitely delighted but will his side hold the lead to the end of second half?
End of First half, Nigeria 3-0 Mali
An Emenike shot of a free kick pass by Brown Ideye puts Nigeria on a comfortable 3-0 lead.
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!!!! Nigeria with the goal number 3!
GOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!!! Nigeria scores the third goal.
Nigerian players playing with confidence and showing off hidden soccer skills, exciting fans.
Maiga gets a yellow card for for fouling Nigeria’s Emenike. Nigeria’s Efe Ambrose also got a yellow card earlier in the match.
Victor Moses gave the assist for the first goal after a terrific dribble in Mali’s goal area.
Two goals from Echiejile and Brown Ideye puts Nigeria ahead with 2-0.
31′ Nigeria 2-0 Mali
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!!! Nigeria scores the second goal. Brown Ideye scores a beautiful goal off a lass from Emenike
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!!! Nigeria scores.
While the Malian defense keep a close eye on Emenike, the Nigerian defense battle with Keita.
Both sides striking and defending well at the moment. Both defenses fighting hard to contain contending defenders.
Close strike from Mikel Obi goes narrowly wide. Would have been the goal of the tournament.
Close attempts by three Nigerian strikers, off a classic Mikel Obi pass, ends in a corner kick for Nigeria. Corner taken, defended by Mali. Nigeria just lost a good chance!
Sissoko takes a long range shot on target, hoping to surprise Nigerian goalkeeper, Enyeama, but shot goes wide.
Taller Malian easily wins battle for headers, a Traore heads misses the woodworks narrowly.
Mali gets second corner kick.
Nigeria with the pressure and possession so far but Mali leading in goal attempts.
Corner kick taken, the Malians got a free header but nodded wide. Goal kick.
5′ game has been stable so far. A Malian strike deflected into corner kick and got Keshi on his feet.
Nigeria get the first free kick of the match, taken and properly defended by the Malians.
Nigeria start the first half. Nigeria playing in traditional green jersey, Mali playing in Yellow jersey.
Nigeria will be playing the 4-4-2 formation while Mali will play a mor attacking 4-3-3
Two of the three AFCON 2013 top goal scorers an on the pitch, Emenike of Nigeria and Keita of Mali, both have scored three goals.
Both teams out on the pitch. National anthems taken. It is a bright sunny day in Durban.
FIFA RANKING: Mali is ranked 25th in the world by Fifa while Nigeria is ranked in 52nd place.
Nigeria has been crowned champions of Africa on two occasions (1980 and 1994), played in four previous finals (1984, 1988, 1990, 2000), finished third seven times (1976, 1978, 1992, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2010). The Super Eagles have been eliminated twice in the first round (1963 and 1982) and once in the quarter final (2008). This semi-final in the Orange AFCON 2013 against Mali will be the 14th in their history. Before 1976, Nigeria had only made one appearance at the Africa Cup of Nations, 1963, held in Ghana. No other country has yet to equal that record in African football.
Nigeria and Mali have crossed each other’s path four times; twice in the first round and both ending in stalemates, 0-0 (2000, 2008). The two teams have also faced off twice at the third place with Nigeria emerging victors on both occasions, 1-0 (2002) and 2-1 (2004).
Mali made it to the finals once (1972), played in three semi-finals (2002, 2004, 2012) and was eliminated twice in the first round (2008, 2010).
Nigeria has played in 13 African Cup of Nation’s Semi Finals.
Nigeria comes into this game as the more advantaged side, having played the most semi-final matches in the history of the Nations Cup.
Keshi sticks to team that beat Cote d’ Ivoire
The Super Eagles Coach, Stephen Keshi, has decided to stick to the team that beat Cote d’ Ivoire in the quarter-final match.
The same first eleven that beat the Ivorians will start against the Eagles of Mali on Wednesday evening. This means that returning Fegor Ogude remains on the bench.
See the Nigerian starting eleven below.
Nig XI vs. Mali Enyeama; Echeijile, Ambrose, Oboabona, Omeruo; Onazi, Mikel, Mba; Moses, Emenike, Ideye