Nigeria’s U-20 girls, Falconets fought hard and with discipline, and earned a ticket to the 2016 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup on Sunday when beating South Africa 1-0 in Johannesburg.
The fixture was delicately poised after the Basetsana got a penalty in added time that they scored in the first leg in Nigeria, reducing the Falconets win to 2-1.
However, Falconets Coach, Peter Dedevbo’s gameplan worked as he sent out an attacking side at the Makhulong Stadium in Tembisa – venue of the Super Falcons’ triumph in the African Women Championship in 2004.
Nigeria dominated the early exchanges and it was no surprise when striker Chinwendu Ihezuo (top scorer at the 2012 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Azerbaijan) scored from a pull –out by defender Mary Ologbosere in the 16th minute to increase the Falconets’ aggregate advantage.
South Africa continued to fight but the Falconets held on till the end, and will be one of Africa’s two flagbearers at next year’s FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Papua New Guinea.
At the end, Coach Dedevbo said: “Our ability on the African continent has never been in doubt. We had a gameplan and stuck to it till the end.
“Our objective now should be to start preparing towards winning the World Cup next year.”