MX23RW : Tuesday, September 28 12:41:49| >> :600:1110954:1110954:
Nov 18, 2013 at 7.45pm UK at Craven Cottage
Italy
2-2
Nigeria
Rossi (14'), Giaccherini (48')
FT(HT: 1-2)
Dike (35'), Ameobi (41')

Result: Italy, Nigeria share spoils in London

Italy and Nigeria play out an entertaining 2-2 draw in an international friendly at Craven Cottage.

Italy and Nigeria have played out an entertaining 2-2 draw in an international friendly at Fulham's Craven Cottage.

The Azzurri took the lead after just 14 minutes when Mario Balotelli showed good strength to hold onto the ball before sliding a pass through to Giuseppe Rossi, who delayed his finish slightly before slotting it past the keeper.

Nigeria almost hit back immediately when Ogenyi Onazi let fly from distance, but his powerful low strike was parried wide by Salvatore Sirigu.

Balotelli almost got his own name on the scoresheet with just under 10 minutes left of the half, but Austin Ejide made an important one-handed stop to deny the AC Milan striker from a tight angle.

Bright Dike of Nigeria celebrates scoring the first goal during the international friendly match between Italy and Nigeria at Craven Cottage on November 18, 2013© Getty Images

Nigeria went up the other end and found the equaliser a minute later as Bright Dike planted his header into the corner from Shola Ameobi's cross.

Ameobi went one better and scored himself four minutes later, flicking the ball beyond Sirigu to complete a swift comeback.

Italy responded soon after the restart, however, as Emmanuel Giaccherini slammed the ball home having been picked out at the far post by Andrea Candreva.

Italy's midfielder Emanuele Giaccherini scores his team's second goal during the International friendly football match between Italy and Nigeria at Craven Cottage in London on November 18, 2013© Getty Images

The Azzurri could have regained their lead with two chances in the space of three minutes shortly after the hour mark, but Marco Parolo first put a volley from close range over the bar before hitting the post, having been played through by Alessandro Diamanti.

Diamanti came within inches of getting a goal of his own in the closing stages when he sent a curling free kick crashing off the woodwork with just two minutes to play.

Neither side could find a winning goal, however, as Nigeria held on for an impressive draw.

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Italy's midfielder Emanuele Giaccherini scores his team's second goal during the International friendly football match between Italy and Nigeria at Craven Cottage in London on November 18, 2013
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