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Olympics: Nigeria pick Oshoala, Ajibade, Nnadozie, 15 others

Randy Waldrum, Super Falcons Head Coach, has picked captain, Rasheedat Ajibade, striker Asisat Oshoala and goalkeeper, Chiamaka Nnadozie, in his final team list for the…

Randy Waldrum, Super Falcons Head Coach, has picked captain, Rasheedat Ajibade, striker Asisat Oshoala and goalkeeper, Chiamaka Nnadozie, in his final team list for the Women’s Olympic football tournament in France.

This is contained in a statement by Ademola Olajire, Head, Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Communications Department, on Wednesday in Abuja.

The coach also listed defenders Osinachi Ohale, Oluwatosin Demehin and Michelle Alozie in the squad.

Others on the list include midfielders Deborah Abiodun, Halimatu Ayinde, Christy Ucheibe and Toni Payne.

Esther Okoronkwo, Chinwendu Ihezuo and Uchenna Kanu – all forwards – also made the final list.

According to Olajire, some squad members currently on holiday in Nigeria will join the home-based players and team officials aboard an Air France flight from Abuja to Sevilla, Spain on Thursday night.

He added that the rest of the playing body and technical team would also arrive in Sevilla on Friday, for a two-week training camp.

The team is scheduled to depart Sevilla for France on Thursday, July 18.

The nine-time African champions, Nigeria, who are making their first appearance at the Women’s Olympic football tournament for the first time since 2008 in China, will tackle Brazil, Spain and Japan in that order, at this year’s tournament.

To qualify for the 12-team tournament, the Falcons edged South Africa’s Banyana Banyana 1-0, with a strike from the penalty spot in Abuja by Ajibade, separating Africa’s top two teams, over two legs in April.

Their first game, against Brazil, comes up at the Stade Bordeaux on July 25, before confrontations with Spain on July 28 and Japan on July 31,” he stated.

The matches against Spain and Japan will be held at the Stade de la Beaujoire in Nantes, where the Super Eagles famously defeated tournament favourites Spain, 3-2 in a memorable game at the 1998 FIFA World Cup finals.

Full list
Goalkeepers: Chiamaka Nnadozie (Paris FC); Tochukwu Oluehi (Shualat Alsharqia FC, Saudi Arabia)

Defenders: Osinachi Ohale (Pachucha Club de Futbol, Mexico); Oluwatosin Demehin (Stade de Reims, France); Michelle Alozie (Houston Dash, USA); Nicole Payne (Portland Thorns FC, USA); Chidinma Okeke (Mynavi Sendai Ladies, Japan)

Midfielders: Deborah Abiodun (University of Pittsburgh, USA); Halimatu Ayinde (FC Rosengard, Sweden); Christy Ucheibe (SL Benfica, Portugal); Jennifer Echegini (Juventus Ladies, Italy); Toni Payne (Sevilla FC, Spain)

Forwards: Rasheedat Ajibade (Atletico Madrid FC, Spain); Esther Okoronkwo (Changchun FC, China); Asisat Oshoala (Bay FC, USA); Uchenna Kanu (Racing Louisville, USA); Chiwendu Ihezuo (Pachucha Club de Futbol, Mexico); Chinonyerem Macleans (Locomotiv Moscow, Russia)

Alternate Players: Jumoke Alani (Nasarawa Amazons); Ifeoma Onumonu (Utah Royals, USA); Gift Monday (Coasta Adeje Tenerife Egatesa, Spain); Morufa Ademola (Rivers Angels)

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