By Izuchukwu Okosi:
Nigeria women U20 team coach, Peter Dedevbo has expressed his frustration at their 1-1 draw against Mexico in their first Group C game of the 2014 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in the early hours of Thursday.
The two teams wasted a number of scoring chances but Fabiano Ibarra put the Mexicans ahead in the 23rd minute with a delicate chip before Osarenoma Igbinovia hit a speculative shot which nestled into the net, taking a deflection on its way goalward.
“There are some matches that, although you expect to win, you can’t manage to do so, and I’m a little bit dissapointed, Dedevbo told FIFA.com
“But it was a good fight between the two teams. I have to say that Mexico’s goalkeeper, Cecilia Santiago, is impressive and produced a good performance today.”
However Dedevbo who before the game boasted that he was unfazed by the im pressive record of his predecessors has vowed to work on the team’s lapses before their second game of the group, against Korea Republic on Saturday.
“Looking ahead to the next match, I want to work on every position on the field – goalkeeper, defence, midfield, but the most important thing we need to improve on is our finishing,” he stated.
Nigeria’s next group opponents, Korea Republic were also held to a 1-1 draw by England in the first game of the group.
Mexico’s coach Christopher Cuellar also commented about his team’s game against the Nigerians.
“Mexico have played several times with Nigeria in several categories and we knew this was going to be a very physical game, so we told the girls not to back down.
“It was a tough match with chances for both sides and it’s always nice to start with a positive result.
“Obviously, it would have been better getting the three points, but starting a tournament with a draw was not bad either, especially when, like today, it’s a tight match.
Both group results has left all the teams’ chances of advancing to the quarter-finals open.