Falcons seek first win over US in Kansas


The Nigerian Super Falcons and the United States Women’s National Team begin their two-match contest on Saturday (today) at the Children’s Mercy Park in Kansas City, PUNCH Sports Extra reports.
The Falcons will be aiming to record their first win in seven games against the Americans.
Both teams, who have already secured qualification for the 2023 Women’s World Cup finals in Australia and New Zealand, will have a second match at the Audi Field in Washington on September 6.
USA and Nigeria will be meeting today for the second time in two years, though this will be just the seventh matchup in history between the nations and only the second such meeting in a friendly match. The first five games between the USA and Nigeria all came at world championship events, with four meetings at the Women’s World Cup (1999, 2003, 2007 and 2015) and one at the Olympics (2000).
Apart from a 7-1 win to USA in the first ever meeting between the teams – which came in group play at the 1999 Women’s World Cup – and a 5-0 victory for the Americans in the 2003 World Cup group stage, the majority of the meetings between these two countries have been tightly contested. The USA defeated Nigeria, 3-1, at the 2000 Olympics and registered a pair of 1-0 group stage wins over the Falcons at both the 2007 and 2015 World Cups.
The USWNT has a perfect record against African opposition, defeating Nigeria six times in six meetings. The USWNT has kept clean sheets in each of its last six games against CAF foes. They also defeated South Africa twice in two games.
Coach Randy Waldrum has picked four members of Nigeria’s girls that reached the quarterfinals at the just-concluded FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup in Costa Rica. They are defenders Oluwatosin Demehin and Rofiat Imuran, and midfielders, Esther Onyenezide and Deborah Abiodun.
Home-based professionals Christy Ohiaeriaku, Akudo Ogbonna and Gift Monday are also in the delegation. First-choice goalkeeper Chiamaka Nnadozie, defender Osinachi Ohale, midfielder Toni Payne and forwards Rasheedat Ajibade and Uchenna Kanu will provide the spine for an interesting Nigeria selection.