Nigeria’s women national team, the Falconets on Thursday defeated England 2-1 in their last Group C game of the 2014 FIFA u-20 World Cup in Canada.
England went in front in the 5th minute of the game through striker Nikita Parris who beat an offside trap but Loveth Ayila equalised for Nigeria in the 41st minute when she produced a lovely skill and powerful shot to march that England’s keeper Elizabeth Durack failed to hold firmly allowing the ball to go through her hands.
Asisat Oshoala made it 2-1 for Nigeria in the 58th minute when she converted a penalty after being fouled.
Incidentally England could not score the penalty awarded them earlier though the referee; Qin Liang’s call was questionable.
Bethany Mead missed the spot kick which seemed to give the Falconets the impetus to seek a sucker punch soon afterwards.
Both teams enjoyed their moments of possession though the Nigerian side had more chances to score more goals but for some wastefulness in front of goal, with half time substitute, Uchechi Sunday the biggest culprit.
Nigeria had 12 attempts on goal while England weighed in 13. However six of the Falconets’ efforts were on target while England had seven. Nigeria had 45% possession after the game and England’s statistics read 55%.
Peter Dedevbo’s lasses will now play New Zealand in their quarter finals game on late Sunday night as Group C winners.
The New Zealanders finished as Group D runner-up. North Korea were Group C runners-up and have a herculean task when they confront Group D winners France who had three wins in three games.
The duo of Courtney Dike and arguably the ‘Woman of the Match’ Sarah Nodim worked tirelessly in the game and will be key in Nigeria’s hopes of reaching the semi finals.
Nigeria were beaten in the final of the 2010 U-20 World Cup by Germany and were semi finalists two years ago.