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Super Falcons stun World Cup co-host Australia in five-goal thriller

Nine-time African champions, the Super Falcons of Nigeria made history yesterday as they fought back gallantly to beat 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup co-host Australia…

Nine-time African champions, the Super Falcons of Nigeria made history yesterday as they fought back gallantly to beat 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup co-host Australia 3-2 to top a World group for the first time in their history.

Caitlin Foord’s pass was converted by Emily van Egmond, giving Australia the early lead but Nigeria quickly equalised with Uchenna Kanu’s clinical finish in first half added time, before Osinachi Ohale’s header made it 2-1.

Despite Alanna Kennedy’s late goal, Nigeria who are the only African team to have played in all editions of the FIFA Women’s World Cup held on after Asisat Oshoala scored following a mix-up between Australia’s Kennedy and Mackenzie Arnold.

Australia faces Olympic winners Canada in Melbourne and may require a win to go to the knockout stages, while Nigeria faces the already-eliminated Republic of Ireland in Brisbane.

Asisat Oshoala, set a record of becoming first African to score in three FIFA Women’s World Cups said her team mates gave all their best to get the win.

“I give kudos to my teammates, everyone gave their hearts out. No one knows that this team is made off. We showed the kind of heart we have. This team has a lot to offer and the world has seen it.

 “To be honest, I wasn’t feeling too well but I am not selfish. If one person is not 100% fit, another person will step up, that is why we are 23 in the squad. What is more important is the team result, not whether I start a game or not,” she said during the post-match conference.

Nigeria captain Onome Ebi also made history, extending her record as the African player to have featured in most FIFA World Cup tournaments, when she came in with minutes to the end, to play in her sixth World Cup finals.

The Super Falcons will be up against the eliminated Republic of Ireland on Monday, while the co-hosts take on Canada in a must-win match.

A draw will be enough for the Falcons to make progress, no matter the outcome of the other match.

 

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