Terrible indiscipline and a cruel goalkeeping error allowed Greece to record their first ever World Cup victory as they all but ended Nigeria's competitive interest in South Africa 2010 with a 2-1 victory.
Nigeria took the lead in the 16th minute as Kala Uche drifted a free-kick into the box that missed everybody and they looked by far the more urgent and assured team during the opening period.
However, that all changed just after the half-hour mark when Sani Kaita stupidly kicked out at Vassilis Torosidis and rightly received a straight red card for his stupidity.
Greece immediately went on the attack as they sensed a fine opportunity to win their first World Cup match at the fifth time of asking.
As half-time approached Giorgos Karagounis should have scored from close range but saw his effort saved by Vincent Enyeama in the Nigeria goal and Georgios Samaras also had a shot cleared off the line.
A Greece goal felt imminent though and that was how it proved just before the interval when Dimitri Salpingidis finally scored Greece's first-ever World Cup goal as his shot took a wicked deflection past the helpless Enyeama.
After the break, Greece goalkeeper Alexandros Tzorvas had to be on his toes to tip over an intelligent effort from Uche as Nigeria started as the brighter side despite being a man short.
However that soon changed as Greece pushed in a bid to find a crucial second.
Sotirios Kyrgiakos should have done better with a close-range header and Theofanis Gekas was also denied by a stunning Enyeama save as the Nigerian goalkeeper looked a certainty for the man of the match award.
Nigeria also had chances as firstly Yakubu saw Tzorvas brilliantly save his weak effort before Obasi Ogbuke then missed an open goal from the rebound.
Greece switched off at one point and seemed to be merely meandering through the encounter rather than utilising their extra player and Enyeama continued to impress as he clawed away another Samaras header.
However, with 19 minutes left, he then made a mistake that proved to be fatal as he dropped the ball at the feet of Torosidis who jabbed home from four yards to settle it.
That cruel mistake breathes fresh hopes into Greece's chances of making it into the last 16 - although they will have to get something from next week's Argentina encounter - while the loss virtually ended any Nigeria hopes of progressing through to the knockout stages as they are left needing a miracle to now make it through.