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2022 U-20 WWC: Battling Falconets Beat France To Get Campaign Off To Perfect Start

2022 U-20 WWC: Battling Falconets Beat France To Get Campaign Off To Perfect Start

Nigeria’s Falconets got their campaign at this year’s FIFA women’s World Cup in Costa Rica off to a winning start after edging France 1-0 in Group D opening game, Completesports.com reports.

The game which was played in the early hours of Friday saw Flourish Sabastine get the only goal late in the second half.

Next up for the Falconets is a second Group D clash with South Korea on Sunday.

The Falconets were awarded a free kick close to the edge of the French box but goalkeeper Marie Petiteau came out to save the dangerous swung in effort.

In the 10th minute France had the first attempt on goal but skipper Laurina Fazer’s shot was well claimed by Falconets keeper Omini Oyono.

On 20 minutes the game was suspended by Mexican referee Francia González due to heavy rain.

The game resumed and it was France who almost broke the deadlock on 23 minutes from a dangerous corner, with the Falconets keeper misjudging the flight of the ball but the defence cleared the danger.

Also Read: 2022 U-20 WWC: USA Thrash Ghana 3-0 In Group Opener

France went close again on 29 minutes as substitute Traore rose highest to meet a cross but her header went inch wide.

It was the turn of the Falconets to threaten aft Deborah Abiodun tried a long range strike which went wide.

On 39 minutes the French could have taken the lead following a goal mouth scramble but a Falconets player made a timely block before the rebound was cleared to safety.

In the 54th minute Esther Onyenezide tried a long range left foot shot but it was well saved by the French keeper.

Falconets had a big chance on 58 minutes through Mercy Idoko but she was denied by France keeper.

Oyono in goal for Falconets was called to action in the 63rd minute as she stopped a superb long range strike.

With 20 minutes left to play France went on a counter but Oyono came out to stop a dangerous cross with her leg.

In the 81st minute France thought they had scored from a corner but after consultations with VAR the goal was overruled for a foul on the Falconets keeper.

In the 85th minute the Falconets took the lead through Flourish Sabastine who ran on to a through pass from Idoko before slotting past the French keeper.

With two minutes left to play Megane Hoeltzel tried a long range strike but Oyono held firmly.

By James Agberebi

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  • Footballfanatic 2 years ago

    Great play for the Falconets….They played well. When we have a coach like Danjuma why waste money on Waldrum. These girls beat a team full of Olympic Lyonnais players. The scorer for Nigeria is even unattached..

  • Footballfanatic 2 years ago

    Great play from the Falconets….They played well. When we have a coach like Danjuma why waste money on Waldrum. These girls beat a team full of Olympic Lyonnais players. The scorer for Nigeria is even unattached..

  • Onero 2 years ago

    Congratulations to the falconet and Nigeria. Take it match by match . Youthfulness is your weapon to conquer

  • Professor 2 years ago

    Nigeria my country, be making me proud jare

  • MONKEY POST 2 years ago


    OMO from TODAY ya’ll should start SEEING me as a WOMAN..

    Am CONSIDERING changing my GENDER..

    Cos the TREND of WOMEN making us PROUD these days is so so AMAZING!

  • Congratulations Congratulations Congratulations keep on shinning, the falconet and Nigeria.

  • Ako Amadi 2 years ago

    Some of these Falconets must be drafted to replace ageing Super Falcons.

  • Dr Tora 2 years ago

    Great play from the Falconet, with luck, determination and intelligent coaching inputs, these girls will surely go impressively  far in this tournament. They should watch out on the following lapses:
    1. The right full back is a weak link, she has the strength but lack confidence and football intelligence in precarious situations 
    2. The team looks so fragile during set pieces, the keeper has problems with aerial battles and not really sharp enough
    3. The girls are good but lack of correct technical inputs at the appropriate time to me may cost the team golden opportunity, like “the very interesting substitute” of removing the goal scorer who was the best player on the pitch may be so costly when we are facing an highly technical and stiffer opposition 

    I see a lot of players among this team who can replace our aging Falcons. I believe Waldrum is taking his notes. Nigeria female teams still have talented but our problems are clueless coaching crew and inept administrators. We have no reason losing our dominance in Women Africa football but overly dependence on foreign based players and coaches is our Achilles heels

    I wish our Falconet successful outing in their campaign during this U20 World Cup tournament 

  • Omo9ja 2 years ago

    Well done Falconet. Sweet victory. The coach still have a lot to improve in this team and I am expecting our team to improve after this match.

    No accurate shots on target. The golie was shaky throughout the match and she could not catch the ball once.

    Nigeria won the match in the midfield. We were able to control the tempo of the match. Bravo.

    I believe Falconet will improve and the coach will fix the loopholes in the team before the next match. So far so good. God bless Nigeria!!!

  • This match is not the best of matches to judge them, considering the heavy ďownpour. Do not not forget they are women.They tried and winning first group match is a step towards making it to the quarter finals.They are skillful , intelligent in their play and with good positioning.
    After being beaten by that rain with the field and the balls slippery haba…they tried.
    Kudos to the team.

  • pompei 2 years ago

    Close game. Congrats to the Falconets.

  • pompei 2 years ago

    Who is that ONYENEZIDE?
    A joy to watch.

  • pompei 2 years ago

    Demehin was solid in the defense. Deo recently singled her out as one to watch. The reason is now obvious.
    How about the pass from Mercy Idoko that led to the goal? Xavi Hernandez would have been proud of that one.
    I will cut the goalie some slack, because of the wet conditions.
    Overall, good team performance. Na European champions France be ooo. Falconets just defeated Europe’s best!
    And noteworthy that VAR smiled on Nigeria, for once!
    On to the next one.

    • Thanks Pompei. I followed them religiosity through the world cup qualifiers so I had an inkling what to expect. As a brief summary, the 5 players I specifically listed to look out of in this tournament are:

      1) Oluwatosin Demehin: a centre back with maturity and pace of a full back. She was in the Super Falcons squad against USA last year.

      2) Rofiat Imruan: A fullback who has already worked with Waldrum. She was part of the Wafcon qualifiers against Ghana.

      3) Flourish Sebastine : exceptional speedster with eloquent dribbling abilities. A future Super Falcon all day.

      4) Mercy Idoko: a support striker/attacking midfielder/centre midfielder/ or center forward. Like I said back then, she always reminds me of Under 20 Mikel Obi. I have a feeling that Idoko, just like Mikel, might also end up as a defensive midfielder in her senior football career. She has the intelligence, movement, passing range and body build for that position. She just needs to acquire and hone the defensive facet of that role.

      Esther Onyenezide: a player that can function anywhere in the final third. A clinical finisher and an ambitious footballer, her head is screwed in all the right places. Stardom beakons for this smoothie…

    • Others Super Falcons prospects are:
      -Joy Jerry
      -Abiodun Deborah
      -Bashirat Amoo.

      Goalkeeper Monye Oyono was just nervous against European champions France. Once (or if) she overcomes her trepidations, she too will go places.

      • Codex 2 years ago

        The Falconets did a sterling job on the right side(flank) by making sure the french did not progress,that’s where the dangerous Hutre was operating and she was pocketed by Alani and co. Maybe deo conveyed to coach Chris my message when I said that the french are strong on the wings and therefore should be stopped there while Onyenezide ran the show from midfield what a player. Another batch of potential super falcons loading maybe(level of development hinges on the upcoming elections).

  • olubaba 2 years ago

    That pass from Mercy Idoko was sublime. typical Iniesta and Xavi Hernandez pass.

  • Chima E Samuels 2 years ago

    Good news!!!

  • Yeboah 2 years ago

    Nigeria was lucky to get a weak French team. If they had played against USA, it would have been a different story. I guess they would have lost by at least four goals. I watched their game against France and they were just average. Meanwhile, Ghana was unlucky with that red card. Sometimes the god of soccer is not fair at all.

    • Helius 2 years ago

      Keep crying oga

    • Codex 2 years ago

      The same ‘WEAK’ french team that whooped your team’s asses abi

    • Onero 2 years ago

      But your ugly Queens were battered 4-0 by the same France in a friendly match just some two weeks ago. Go and find cure for your bad belle

    • Anthony 2 years ago

      Ghanaians The deep hatred una get for Nigerians is getting out of hand. Why are u commenting here in the first place?

  • Obest 2 years ago

    Yeboah, where is your brother self made shit? Guess he sent you here. When has Ghana ever appreciated Nigeria?Just recently, Ghana came back from the commonwealth games empty hand. Not even a golden black shit bronze? So many records were broken by team Nigeria. Appreciate who pass you. Yeboah, at least appreciate this Nigerian team, they beat the European champions and that’s not still okay for you. Envy will really kill you Ghanaians.Apu.

  • Ochuke 2 years ago

    This is what makes us thick when we play against the world. We do pretty well most times when we assemble good players for tournament and work seriously on them at the junior level. However, at senior level, both falcons and super eagles, despite the array of stars we have, we still struggle. This is consequent upon the fact that these teams do not fight and run for 90mins like their junior counterparts. They want to play clean football and think they can win anything in Africa? No way! If you give the indomitable lions of Cameroon the calibre of players we have in the super eagles they would have won the nations Cup. Cameroonian play had football, however they struggle when the squad lacks good players. Recall the last nations Cup they lifted with some brilliant skilful individual. They falconet were able to defeat France because they contested every ball, ran for 90mins and applied skills to score the goal. The pass was made from heaven and just look at the way the attacker brilliantly placed the ball. Girls I am proud of you. I hope to see our senior teams both male and female run for 90mins in the future. I know we will do great in any tournament because we have skilful players in those teams. Congratulations Falconet.

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