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Page last updated at 21:08 GMT, Sunday, 15 November 2009

Swiss seal U-17 World Cup victory

By Oluwashina Okeleji
BBC Sport, Abuja

Haris Seferovic scored the only goal of the final
Seferovic's second-half goal settled the match

Debutants Switzerland beat hosts Nigeria 1-0 to win the 2009 Fifa Under-17 World Cup in Abuja on Sunday.

Haris Seferovic headed home the only goal in the 63rd minute to earn Switzerland their first Fifa World Cup success at any level.

Nigeria had late chances to level score but the Swiss held their nerve to spoil the party for the Golden Eaglets and their vociferous home fans.

They proved to be worthy champions, winning every match in the tournament.

Nigeria, chasing an unprecedented fourth U-17 world crown, made a purposeful start, piling heavy pressure on the Swiss and creating a handful of scoring chances.

But Abdul Jagun, Sani Emmanuel and Aigbe Oliha had their efforts saved or punched away by Swiss goalkeeper Benjamin Siegrist.

It was a different match altogether in the second half as Switzerland abandoned their defensive tactics to take the game to their wasteful opponents.

Nasim Ben Khalifa and Pajtim Kasami took control of the midfield surprisingly muscling out strapping Nigerian midfielder Ramon Azeez.

They deservedly took the lead as Seferovic leaped above Azeez in the Nigerian penalty area to head a corner-kick over Dami Paul and into the far corner for his fifth goal of the tournament.

Stanley Okoro shot agonisingly wide late in the game to sum up Nigeria's profligacy in front of goal.

They had the ball in the back of the net a few minutes later, but the referee ruled it out for an infringement on Siegrist.

The home fans who had created an electrifying atmosphere inside the Abuja National Stadium went home dejected and disappointed.

But in the end, Switzerland who also defeated Brazil, Germany and Italy to win the trophy, celebrated with their handful of fans in red.

Spain finished in third place after beating Colombia 1-0 in the third-place match.

Despite a brave Colombia showing in the second half, it was Isco's strike just inside the box in the 75th minute that earned them a slim victory.

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see also
Nigeria chase U-17 history
14 Nov 09 |  African
Nigeria qualify for the World Cup
14 Nov 09 |  African
2009 Under-17 World Cup
01 Nov 09 |  African
Nigeria into under-17 final
12 Nov 09 |  African
Ghana triumphant at U20 World Cup
16 Oct 09 |  African
Nigeria are U-17 world champions
09 Sep 07 |  African

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