Super Falcons’ winger Francisca Ordega says the team’s victory over Botswana is the beginning of better things to come for Nigeria at the ongoing 2022 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations in Morocco.
The Cup holders got their 12th Women Africa Cup of Nations campaign back on track with a 2-0 win over Botswana.
The result on Thursday in Rabat meant the Super Falcons earned their first three points of the tournament and leaped to the second spot on the Group C four-team table behind table-toppers South Africa.
Nigeria won the match in spite of the absence of their top player Asisat Oshoala, who suffered an injury during Monday’s match and was ruled out of the tournament.
The Barcelona star, who is a four-time African Footballer of the Year winner, suffered the knee setback that has ruled her out of the competition.
In the absence of the 27-year old attacker, striker Ifeoma Onumonu took charge of the attacking duties and was not overawed by the event.
Onumonu put the Super Falcons in the lead in the 21st minute when she raced past her markers before putting the ball beyond the advancing goalkeeper Maitumelo Bosija.
Nigeria extended their lead just after the break, when substitute Christy Ucheibe rose highest to powerfully head home with goalkeeper Bosija completely beaten.
NAN also reports that South Africa had earlier in the day thumped Burundi 3-1 to lead the group and advance to the quarter-finals.
Botswana, 4-2 winners over Burundi on the opening day, had led the group following the Super Falcons’ 1-2 loss to the Banyana Banyana on Monday.
Ordega who was adjudged the woman-of-the-match, expressed delight at the outcome of the game, saying that the win was the beginning of better things to come for Nigeria.
She said: “I am indeed very excited about our performance today, especially after coming from a defeat to South Africa in our first game.
“We executed our game plan and came out victorious and winning today has given us more moral.
“We are so happy and it is the beginning of good things to come.”
The Super Falcons will on Sunday come up against their counterparts from Burundi, with a win certain to guarantee a place in the quarter-finals of the championship.
Botswana on the other hand need at least a draw against South Africa to have hopes of securing a quarter-final spot through the best-losers spot.
But a win for Botswana can drop Nigeria to third spot, with the title-holders needing to reach the quarter-finals only if they beat Burundi, or get at least a draw.