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Super Falcons, Lionesses talk tough ahead of titanic battle in Abuja

The Head Coach of the Super Falcons, Randy Waldrum and Captain Rasheedat Ajibade are confident the nine-time African champions will overcome the challenge of Cameroon…

The Head Coach of the Super Falcons, Randy Waldrum and Captain Rasheedat Ajibade are confident the nine-time African champions will overcome the challenge of Cameroon and reach the final round of the African qualifying series for this year’s Women’s Olympic Football Tournament in France.

Waldrum led his ladies to a scoreless draw in the first leg in Douala on Friday, with the Nigerians rueing a disallowed goal by Jennifer Echegini early in the second half. Both squads then joined the same flight from Douala into Abuja yesterday morning.

“We played a good game in Douala and we are confident of our chances to get the ticket in Abuja. It was never going to be easy having only a few days together with the girls, but we will make the best of the opportunities that we are able to create on home ground on Monday,” said Waldrum.

Ajibade, who scored the lone Nigeria goal that threw Cameroon’s Lionesses out of the Women Africa Cup of Nations in Morocco 19 months ago, and also netted two of the goals that eliminated Ethiopia in the second round of these qualifying series, says the Falcons have no fear of whatever the arch rivals can bring to the turf of the MKO Abiola National Stadium.

“Our objective remains getting the Olympics ticket. Personally, I have never played at the Olympics and that is the case with an overwhelming majority of players in this team. We are determined to take this opportunity. We have another 90 minutes to make our claim to the final-round ticket and we are focused on a positive result.”

However, Coach Jean-Baptiste Bisseck is also confident of the ability of his Lionesses to turn the table against the nine-time African champions in Nigeria’s administrative capital.

“We will play on the Abuja field as if we are playing at home. Cameroon will not entertain any fear. The Lionesses are prepared to win and make progress.”

Both teams will compete on a clean slate this evening at the MKO Abiola National Stadium in Abuja having battled to a barren ending in Douala, with the winner most likely to be up against reigning African champions South Africa for a place in Paris.

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