January 17, (THEWILL) – The head coach of the Nigerian national women’s soccer team, the Super Falcons, Randy Waldrum, has expressed his confidence in the team’s ability to perform well at the upcoming 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup. The team secured their spot in the tournament after defeating Cameroon’s Lionesses in the quarterfinals of the 12th Women’s Africa Cup of Nations last summer.
Waldrum believes that the current team is capable of emulating the success of the 1999 squad, which made it to the quarterfinals of the World Cup. The 1999 team, led by Florence Omagbemi, defeated North Korea 2-1 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena and disappointedly lost to the US 1-7 despite taking an early lead through Nkiru Okosieme.
They went on to defeat Denmark 2-0 with goals from Mercy Akide and Nkiru Okosieme. In the quarter-finals, the team came back from a 3-0 deficit against Brazil to tie the game 3-3 but ultimately lost in extra time, in the first-ever women’s competitive game decided by the golden goal rule after 104 minutes.
“I am confident and realistic about this. We have an abundance of talents in the squad and I am convinced they can go that far. This particular team is very talented and has the same ability to go far in the tournament, just like the Class of 1999,” Waldrum said in an interview with thenff.com.
The Super Falcons have been drawn into Group B alongside Olympic champions Canada, co-hosts Australia, and the Republic of Ireland. They will play all their group phase matches in Australia, with one match in Melbourne and two in Brisbane.