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WOMEN'S FOOTBALL

Super Falcons plot sweet revenge on England

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In their last match-up, Super Falcons beat England 3-0 at home in 2004.

On 10 June 1995, at the Karlstad City Stadium in Sweden, England’s Three Lionesses edged the Super Falcons of Nigeria 3-2 in one of the final group phase matches of the 2nd FIFA Women’s World Cup finals in that country.

That year, as was the case at the inaugural edition of the competition in China four years earlier, there were only 12 finalists.

The narrow loss, coupled with the eight-goal trashing by Norway and 3-3 draw with Canada earlier in the competition, saw the African champions exit the competition at group stage.

On Monday, 7th August 2023, both teams will clash again, this time, at the biggest-ever FIFA Women’s World Cup finals taking place in Australia and New Zealand (with 32 teams), and at the first knock-out round of the tournament.

To reach this stage, England defeated Haiti and Denmark 1-0 each, before spanking China (1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup finalists) 6-1 on Tuesday.

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Although the Falcons pipped England 1-0 in a friendly in Norwich (England) on 23 July 2002 and then spanked the Three Lionesses 3-0 in another friendly in Reading (also in England) on 22 April 2004, the Nigerian girls feel they need to turn England back at the biggest stage, which is the World Cup.

Adaku Okoroafor and Rita Nwadike netted for Nigeria that day in Sweden. In the friendly match in Norwich, rapid winger Patience Avre got the only goal, and in Reading two years later, a Perpetua Nkwocha brace followed a goal by Rita Nwadike as Nigeria pumped the Three Lionesses in front of their own fans.

“The World Cup is the biggest stage and we just have to do it here,” assistant coach Ann Chiejine, who was in goal that evening in Karlstad, told thenff.com. Chiejine is one of Randy Waldrum’s assistants at the biggest-ever FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

Attacking midfielder Toni Payne, said: “Anything can happen. We just have to go onto the pitch and do our best. We want to win and reach the next stage.”

The stage is set at the Lang Park on Monday evening, from 5.30pm Australia time (8.30am Nigeria) for one of the most anticipated Round of 16 games at this global spectacle Down Under.

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The nine-time African champions are unbeaten in their last six international games, from beating Costa Rica at the Revelation Cup in Mexico in February, to defeating Haiti and New Zealand in a tournament in April in Turkey. At the World Cup, they have drawn with Canada and Republic of Ireland and beaten Australia’s Matildas.

England have lost one of their last six games – a 0-2 defeat by Australia in April. They drew with Brazil in April, and with Portugal in July, but have won their three matches at the ongoing World Cup.

 

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

WOMEN'S FOOTBALL

CAF Women’s Champions League Qualifiers draw holds on Wednesday

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The 2024-2025 women’s interclub football season will officially kick off on Wednesday, 24 July, with the draw for the CAF Women’s Champions League qualifiers in 4 zones: UNAF, UNIFFAC, WAFU B and CECAFA.

The draw will be conducted at 10:00 GMTat the CAF Headquarters in Egypt and live-streamed on CAF TV and CAFOnline.com. 

Below are the teams entered by zone and the dates of the qualifying tournaments:

WAFU B (10 – 23 August): Ainonvi FC (Benin), Hasaacas Ladies (Ghana), Inter d’Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire), AO Étincelles OU USFA (Burkina Faso), AS Garde Nationale (Niger), Edo Queens (Nigeria), ASKO de Kara (Togo).

UNAF (21 – 31 August): CF Akbou (Algeria), Tutankhamun (Egypt), AS Far (Morocco), ASF Sousse (Tunisia)

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CECAFA (17 August – 4 September): PVP Buyenzi (Burundi), FAD (Djibouti), CBE FC (Ethiopia), Kenya Police Bullets (Kenya), Kawempe Muslim (Uganda), Rayon Sports (Rwanda), Yei Joint Stars (South Sudan), Simba Queens (Tanzania), Warriors Queens (Zanzibar)

UNIFFAC (16 – 24 August): Lekié FF (Cameroon), TP Mazembe (DR Congo), Atlético de Malabo (Equatorial Guinea), CSM Diables Noirs (Congo)

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WOMEN'S FOOTBALL

Colombia 2024: Danjuma invites 32 as countdown begins to Final Tournament

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Flying Eagles, Falconets To Resume Camp On Thursday -

With just eight weeks to their first match of the FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup Colombia 2024, Head Coach Chris Musa Danjuma has called up four goalkeepers, eight defenders, eight midfielders and 12 strikers to a training camp in the Federal Capital, Abuja in the first phase of preparation for the global tournament.

Team captain Oluchi Ohaegbulem is top of the list, with first-choice goalkeeper Faith Omilana, defenders Shukurat Oladipo and Comfort Folorunsho, midfielders Chinyere Kalu, Adoo Yina and Rofiat Imuran, and forwards Janet Akekoromowei, Flourish Sabastine and Aminat Bello also called.

Nigeria, a fixture at the FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup finals since the tournament began as an U19 event in Canada 22 years ago, will contend with three-time winners Germany, Asian powerhouse Korea Republic and South American representatives Venezuela in group D of the competition scheduled for three Colombian cities, 31st August – 22nd September.

All the invited are expected at Serob Legacy Hotel, Wuye, Abuja on Sunday, 7th July.

ALL THE INVITED PLAYERS:

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Goalkeepers: Anderline Mgbechi (Delta Queens); Rachael Unachukwu (Nasarawa Amazons); Faith Omilana (Naija Ratels); Shukura Bakare (Nasarawa Amazons)

Defenders: Oluchi Ohaegbulem (Nasarawa Amazons); Jumoke Alani (Nasarawa Amazons); Shukurat Oladipo (FC Robo Queens); Oluwabunmi Oladeji (Naija Ratels); Folashade Adegbemile (Delta Queens); Chidera Okenwa (Delta Queens); Comfort Folorunsho (Edo Queens); Taiwo Lawal

Midfielders: Adoo Yina (Nasarawa Amazons); Olushola Shobowale (Nasarawa Amazons); Aminat Folorunsho (Rivers Angels); Chioma Olise (Edo Queens); Chinyere Kalu (Nasarawa Amazons); Joy Igbokwe (Naija Ratels); Rofiat Imuran (Stade de Reims, France); Zikora Agama (Naija Ratels)

Forwards: Delight Nwosu (Dannaz Ladies); Adaobi Okah (Remo Stars Ladies); Chiamaka Okwuchukwu (Rivers Angels); Chinaza Agoh (Delta Queens); Mary Nkpa (Heartland Queens); Chiamaka Osigwe (Edo Queens); Janet Akekoromowei (Asisat Academy); Mary Offor (Adamawa Queens); Flourish Sabastine (Stade de Reims, France); Sharon Ulumma (Heartland Queens); Aminat Bello (Otero College, USA); Reilly Adebowale (Bohemian FC, Republic of Ireland)   

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WOMEN'S FOOTBALL

Nigeria’s Flamingos drawn against debuting hosts in FIFA U-17 World Cup

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The Flamingos, Nigeria’s U-17 women’s football team have been drawn against hosts, Dominican Republic for the finals of the Women’s U-17 World Cup holding from 16 October to 3 November in two host cities of Santo Domingo  and Santiago de los Caballeros.

 Both Nigeria and Dominican Republic are drawn in Group A along with Ecuador and New Zealand.  In Group B are Spain, USA, Korea Republic and Colombia.

Group C has  Korea DPR, Mexico, Kenya and England while those competing in Group D are  Japan , Poland, Brazil and Zambia.

The hosts will make their debut in the competition on 16 October against Ecuador in Santiago de los Caballeros, with New Zealand and Nigeria completing Group A.

Herrera, the first Dominican woman to reach the summit of Mount Everest, had a special message for her compatriots taking part in the World Cup. She said: “I am the living example that you can achieve your dreams. So, keep up the good work. I am looking forward to seeing those amazing games.”

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Reigning champions Spain, meanwhile, will kick off their campaign in Group B, in which they will face USA, Korea Republic and Colombia, runners-up last time around.

“The advice to all the players that will participate here is to be confident and go live your dream. ¡Y Buena suerte!” said Flores, who took part in this tournament two years ago in India.

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