Nigeria settled quickly in the early stages of the game and created chances, while Banyana had to adjust to the scorching heat, requiring a water break after 15 minutes. The visitors absorbed pressure and were nearly behind around the half-hour mark, but goalkeeper Kaylin Swart made a good save. Nigeria eventually took the lead just before halftime with a penalty converted by Rasheedat Ajibade. In the second half, Banyana improved their attacking game, but were denied an equalizer by the reflexes of goalkeeper Chiamaka Nnadozie.

South Africa gained momentum and applied pressure, but Nigeria’s defense held firm. Banyana made an attacking change with 20 minutes to go, but could not break through, resulting in a narrow loss. The second leg is scheduled for next Tuesday at Loftus Versfeld Stadium.

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