Nigeria Super Falcons will continue their journey in the FIFAWWC after a share of the spoils against Ireland in Group B.
Nigeria Super Falcons have made it through to the knockout stages of the ninth FIFA Women’s World Cup, FIFAWWC for only the third time in Nigeria history.
The Falcons sealed their place in the next round after a share of the spoils against the Republic of Ireland following a goalless affair on Monday afternoon.
Nigeria finished second in Group B behind Australia, who saw off Canada in the other group clash to finish as group winners.
With Nigeria Super Falcons safely through to the knockout stage, here are five things we learnt from the draw against the Irish.
Sloppy Super Falcons
Nigeria’s Super Falcons came into the game with a reputation for starting slow.
This time against the Irish, the Falcons started positively but were quite sloppy in possession.
Nigeria completed just 81 per cent of their passes in the opening half which was dominated by the Irish, who were accurate with 87 per cent of theirs.
The team would improve on that in the second 45 minutes, keeping possession much better than in the opening half.
Toni Payne impresses again
The talented midfielder made it back-to-back games she has stood out in Nigeria’s midfield.
Payne showed good ideas on the ball and created one big chance in the second half when a superb delivery found Uchenna Kanu who connected with a lovely header but watched as the Ireland goalkeeper denied her with an outstanding save.
The 28-year-old, however, struggled with some of her final balls which she needs to work on.
Off day for Oshoala
After her heroics and history-making outing against Australia in the previous game, all eyes were on Oshoala heading into the final game of the group stages.
Oshoala reclaimed her starting berth after dropping to the bench against the Matildas but failed to make it count.
The Barcelona Femeni superstar had an off day in front of goal against the Green Girls after missing Nigeria’s best chance in the first half.
Oshoala, who is now Nigeria’s highest scorer in FIFAWWC history, was subsequently taken off after just an hour on the pitch.
12:50 - 31.07.2023
The Super Falcons are through the round of 16 of the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup after 0-0 draw against Ireland.
Super Falcons neutralise Ireland’s set plays
The Irish girls, in their first two matches, showed that they possess a serious threat from set plays and Nigeria needed to be careful.
Nigeria’s Super Falcons did their homework in the end by ensuring that no needless fouls were given away in areas that would allow Katie McCabe and Megan Connolly to have the chance to hurt the team.
Super Falcons maintain unbeaten run
It sounds unbelievable that Super Falcons not only survived Group B but came out unscathed.
With co-hosts Australia and Olympic champions Canada the favourites, Nigeria’s Falcons wrapped up a ticket for the knockout stages without losing a single game.
The Falcons have looked compact defensively and with Chiamaka Nnadozie ever reliable, Nigeria will go into the next round as the first African nation to keep two clean sheets at the FIFAWWC.
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