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WOMEN'S FOOTBALL

Nigeria Mobilises Against South Africa –

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Nigeria Mobilises Against South Africa -

The General Secretary of Nigeria Football Federation, Dr. Mohammed Sanusi has implored Nigerians based in the Federal capital, Abuja and environs, and indeed from neighbouring States, to troop out in large numbers to the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja on Friday to support the Super Falcons in their Women’s Olympic Football Tournament African final qualifying, first leg game against South Africa.

Nine-time African champions Nigeria and reigning African champions South Africa clash in a potentially-explosive affair in Nigeria’s magnificent sporting facility as from 5pm on Friday. The return leg is due for Pretoria’s high altitude arena, Loftus Versfeld on Tuesday next week.

Girls are ready – Uchenna Kanu and Halimatu Ayinde at training on Wednesday.

“The NFF is calling on Nigerians from all over the Federal Capital Territory and the neighbouring States, and indeed from all over Nigeria, to come out in their tens of thousands to cheer the Super Falcons to victory in the match against South Africa.

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“This is a big match by all standards. We are specially appealing to our people to come en masse and support the Super Falcons. It is important for us to get a big win here in order to be in good stead before flying to South Africa. A handsome win here will bolster our ladies with the confidence and mentality to overcome in Pretoria,” Sanusi said.

 

Nigeria has not participated in the Women’s Olympic Football Tournament since 2008, when the Falcons lost all three matches in the group phase in China.

 

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Captain Rasheedat Ajibade said on Wednesday that the objective of Africa’s leading women’s team, the Falcons, remains the same right from the beginning of the qualifiers.

 

“From the time we played Ethiopia, we have been committed to seeing these qualification series through. Our objective has always been to win a slot to the Olympics. Most of us are yet to play in the Olympics and it is a big issue with us. We want to be there in Paris.

 

“There are a couple of issues the Super Falcons have to sort out with Banyana Banyana, really. However, that is not the motivation this time. The motivation is qualifying for the Olympics.”

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Nigeria emerged Africa’s top team at the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand eight months ago, unbeaten in regulation time before exiting at the Round of 16 courtesy of penalty shootout defeat by England.

 

As at lunchtime on Wednesday, captain Ajibade and 20 other players were in the Super Falcons’ camp, and the team had a first training session at the MKO Abiola Stadium on Wednesday morning.

 

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The Banyana Banyana delegation arrived in Nigeria on Sunday.

 

In Camp:

 

Goalkeepers: Chiamaka Nnadozie, Tochukwu Oluehi, Linda Jiwuaku

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Defenders: Jumoke Alani, Osinachi Ohale, Chidinma Okeke, Shukurat Oladipo, Michelle Alozie, Nicole Payne

 

Midfielders: Rasheedat Ajibade, Toni Payne, Deborah Abiodun, Jennifer Echegini, Christy Ucheibe, Halimatu Ayinde

 

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Forwards: Uchenna Kanu, Gift Monday, Omorinsola Babajide, Ifeoma Onumonu, Esther Okoronkwo, Chiwendu Ihezuo

 

 

 

 

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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.

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Dominican Republic 2024: Liberia stun Senegal to set up date with Flamingos

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Senegal got a stunning sucker punch and were thrown out of the race for this year’s FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup finals after hosts Liberia stormed powerfully to a 2-0 win in Monrovia on Sunday to overturn a 1-3 first leg deficit.

The Young Maidens of Teranga were the favourites going into the second leg in the Liberia capital, but Louise Brown got the hosts in front in added time of the first half, and Dalphine Glao made it two nine minutes into the second half to throw the camp of the visitors into apprehension.

There were to be no further goals but the Liberian girls scraped through to the final round of the qualifiers on the away-goal rule, and will host Nigeria in the first leg on Saturday, 8th June. The return leg comes up a week later at the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja.

FIFA U17 WOMEN’S WORLD CUP AFRICAN FINAL QUALIFYING ROUND

Liberia Vs Nigeria

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Burundi Vs Kenya

Zambia Vs Morocco 

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Dominican Republic 2024: Flamingos thrash Burkinabe girls 6-0 to cruise into final round

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NFF 2ND Vice President, Hon. Gbenga Elegbeleye celebrating with the Flamingos after Saturday’s game.

Nigeria reached the final round of the African qualification series for this year’s FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup finals after a 6-0 defeat of Burkina Faso at the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja on Saturday evening.

Goal-poacher Harmony Chidi, who netted six of Nigeria’s dozen goals in the 12-0 annihilation of Central African Republic in the first round and also got the team’s goal in the 1-1 draw away in Bamako last week Saturday, came up big again with a hat-trick in front of delighted spectators in Nigeria’s administrative capital.

She put the Nigeria U17 girls in front after 11 minutes, capitalizing on a defensive blunder by the duo of Faridatou Ouedraogo and Obaidatou Nkiema to dribble past goalkeeper Agueratou Baguian. Four minutes later, Shakirat Moshood’s angled shot was foiled by the upright, and in the 27th minute, Peace Effiong’s dashing run ended with a tame shot.

Effiong made amends in the 34th minute, riding a couple of rough tackles to flash past the overworked Baguian as spectators egged the Flamingos on. She should have made it 3-0 with four minutes left in the first period, but got too much purchase on the ball from four yards.

In the second half, visiting goalkeeper Baguian drew applause with an excellent double save from Harmony Chidi in the 55th minute, but the World Cup bronze medallists reserved their greater potency for the last quarter-hour. In the 74th minute, Taiwo Afolabi’s soaring volley from 20 yards rocked the crossbar, but Chidi was on hand to coolly nod it into the net.

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Substitute Ramota Kareem made it four in the 84th minute. Two minutes later, Chidi got her hat-trick with a dipping shot, and with one minute left on the clock, Effiong got her brace after a wonderful team move.

Victory earned Nigeria a 7-1 aggregate win, and a place in the final round against the winner of the Senegal/Liberia fixture. The first leg is scheduled for Saturday, 8th June.

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Marta celebrates Brazil hosting 2027 Women’s World Cup

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FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia and New Zealand 2023 - Group F - Jamaica v Brazil - Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, Melbourne, Australia - August 2, 2023 Brazil's Marta reacts REUTERS/Hannah Mckay/File Photo

Brazil’s all-time leading scorer Marta celebrated her country’s selection to host the 2027 Women’s World Cup on Friday and called for the opening match to be played in Rio Grande do Sul, which has been devastated by recent flooding.

Brazil was chosen by the FIFA Congress to stage the tournament, beating a joint bid from Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany to become the first South American nation to host the event.

“I was very happy with the news and I’m sure that the 2027 Women’s World Cup will be a success, and the Brazilian people, as always, will be with open arms to welcome the world soccer community,” Marta said in a video on social media.

The 38-year-old midfielder, a six-times Women’s World Player of the Year, is retiring from international football this year.

“If it were possible, I would like the Brazilian national team’s first match to be in Rio Grande Sul. The state of Rio Grande do Sul deserve it,” Marta added.

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The Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) suspended two rounds of the Brazilian Championship due to the floods that have killed more than 150 people, according to state government figures.

-Reuters

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