Nigeria’s national football team and their Algerian counterparts faced each other in Austria on Friday night in what was the 23rd meeting between the two countries at the international level.
The Desert Foxes triumphed on the day courtesy of a Rami Bensebaini poke-in to record their tenth victory over the Super Eagles, to level up with the West Africans on the number of victories secured in the head-to-head stats.
While Nigeria have also managed ten wins in this fixture, three other games have ended in the share of the honours.
The match played in Klagenfurt was the first international friendly between the two nations, with the previous 21 games all in major tournaments or qualifiers.
The 1-0 result obtained by the Riyad Mahrez-skippered side on October 9 is the most frequent scoreline recorded in this fixture, with a total of seven matches ending with the narrowest of margins.
Friday’s friendly is just the seventh time Nigeria have failed to breach the defensive line of the North African giants.
The three-time African champions have found the back of the net in the other 16 matches, scoring 30 goals and conceding 28 times.
Those 28 goals include the three afforded the Algerians after Nigeria fielded an ineligible player during the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
The Fennecs hold the bragging rights of the biggest margin of victory in the meetings with Nigeria, thrashing the 2013 Afcon winners 5-1 in the opening match of Algiers ’90.
Nigeria, however, regrouped and showed their quality to make it to the final of that tournament, where Algeria once again triumphed 1-0 to earn their first Afcon crown.
The West Africans, though, have a couple of big wins to boast of as well, claiming 4-1 and 5-2 victories during the 1994 and 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifying series, respectively.
Algeria are currently on a run of three consecutive victories over Nigeria, after adding the Klagenfurt win to the 2-1 triumph at last year’s Afcon in Egypt and that boardroom three goals and three points in 2017.
But the longest winning run ever between the two belongs to the Super Eagles. The Nigerian team exercised a ten-year dominance between 1995 and 2016, claiming six consecutive victories
against the Algerians.
During that period, the Super Eagles smashed home 13 goals and conceded only three.
Nigeria will next trade tackles with another North African giant, Tunisia, on October 13 in what should be another exciting encounter between two familiar foes.