Friday, June 2, 2023

Super Falcons spank New Zealand’s Football Ferns 3-0

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Nigeria’s Super Falcons spanked World Cup co-hosts New Zealand 3-0 in a friendly in Antalya, Turkey on Tuesday.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the victory was the third consecutive win for the 11-time African champions.Team captain Onome Ebi headed the Super Falcons in front after 34 minutes at the Mardan Sports Complex.

Her goal had turned the game around after the Football Ferns had put some pressure on the Nigerian defence in the first quarter of the hour.

Spain-based forward Rasheedat Ajibade had missed narrowly with a left-footed shot in the 21st minute.But there was no stopping the inspired Ebi 13 minutes later as she nodded in a cross by Toni Payne.

Jennifer Echegini, playing on the left side of the Nigerian defence, extended the Super Falcons’ lead in the 48th minute after some excellent wing play by Michelle Alozie.

Hannah Wilkinson came close to reducing the tally in the 62nd minute but goalkeeper Chiamaka Nnadozie intervened quickly to keep the scoreline at 2-0.

The Super Falcons continued to launch onslaughts into the Ferns’ half of the field. This was after Gift Monday replaced Asisat Oshoala and Ngozi Okobi-Okeoghene came in for Toni Payne, and Glory Ogbonna replaced Michelle Alozie.

Forward Desire Oparanozie had the last laugh with a typical goal in added time, holding up the ball and slicing past the goalkeeper even with a defender stuck on her.

The Falcons have now scored six goals in their last three matches, conceding only one. At the FIFA World Cup finals slated for July 20 to Aug. 20, Nigeria will play in Group B against co-hosts Australia, Republic of Ireland and Canada.

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