The Nigeria squad is in an especially vulnerable position for the FIFA Women’s World Cup. The Super Falcons won’t have their signature aura when they come to Australia since they lost the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations, a competition they had previously dominated for decades. Of course, Nigeria’s failure to win the World Cup in 2022 was not a first. They had been supplanted by Equatorial Guinea twice, but both times it seemed that their own complacency had played a role. This time, it seems like the rest of Africa is actually catching up.
Both South Africa and Morocco, the two teams that went on to compete in a final and the winner of which was the latter, defeated the Super Falcons. They were beaten by Zambia in the third-place playoff. In addition, the Super Falcons are once again dogged by unpaid bonuses and governmental meddling. Randy Waldrum, the head coach, recently opened out about the pressure he has had over his final squad selection and criticised the lack of preparation leading up to the World Cup in an appearance on the Sounding Off on Soccer podcast.
Waldrum is a controversial coach. In addition to the fact, he effectively works part-time and that his resume was somewhat frail when he was selected. Waldrum failed to win the Wafcon last year. He managed to irritate the Nigerian media by restricting access to the players during the competition, which made problems worse. In his justification, the NFF still owes some payments and he is dealing with unprecedented competition from other African teams since women’s football on the continent is expanding quickly.
Oshoala Asisat. A solid argument may be made for the top player of any team if one plays for a club with the grandeur of Barcelona. Scoring as many goals as she does, is nominated for the Ballon d’Or. She has won the African Women’s Player of the Year award four times. The Super Falcons frequently look to Oshoala for inspiration because of her speed, agility, and eye for the extraordinary. Although it’s not always advantageous for the squad as a whole, this does push the other players to perform at a higher level. She is a role model off the pitch. Asisat runs a foundation and academy for young women. It strives to provide them with the possibilities she didn’t have growing up.
If Nigeria have lacked anything recently, it’s a dependable, mobile connection between the midfield and the attack. Ngozi Okobi has already carried out the position, but Deborah Abiodun now has the opportunity to do so for many more years to come. a member of the 2022 Under-20 World Cup team.
By participating in her sixth FIFA Women’s World Cup, Nigeria international Onome Ebi will surpass Japan icon Homare Sawa. She will remain on par with Marta who will take part as well. If she takes the pitch in Australia or New Zealand. Only the Brazilian Formiga would remain in front of them then. Ebi already holds the African record at age 40.
State of Football
Women’s football get the short end of the stick financially while providing Nigeria with great success. Even though it receives a lot of attention, particularly during large international competitions. Chief among them being social stigma and subpar administration and organization.
Nigeria has never played as many games in a World Cup. They are placed in a challenging group alongside the co-hosts, Australia, and the defending Olympic winners, Canada. In order for them to advance, they must have a lead going into their final group encounter against Ireland.
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