Nigeria’s Super Falcons have qualified for the second round of the ongoing FIFA Women World Cup in France.
— NGSuper_Falcons (@NGSuper_Falcons) June 20, 2019
The girls reached the last 16 late Thursday by picking the last of four qualification slots reserved for the best third-placed teams in the groups, 3 of which had earlier been picked by Brazil, China and fellow Africans, Cameroun.
Despite losing their first and last group games to Norway and hosts, France respectively, a dramatic 3-3 draw in the final Group D match between Argentina and Scotland brightened the African champions’ hopes of qualification and was further sealed with the final Group F result as the girls from Chile failed to beat their Thai counterparts by at least a 3-goal margin to pick the last slot ahead of the Thomas Dennerby’s ladies .
Earlier in the day, Group E team, Cameroon who needed just a goal in their last group game to tie with Nigeria and be in a better position to emerge as one the four best third-placed teams, beat New Zealand 2-1, leaving them with the same minus 2 goal difference with Nigeria while they go through to the next round on fair play rules.
Chile’s 2-0 win over Thailand meant that the Super Falcons go through on the goal difference tiebreaker and will be squared up against Germany in Grenoble on Saturday.
The qualification of Cameroun and Nigeria make it the first time ever that two African countries will play in the knock-out round at the FIFA Women’s World Cup, and it is also the Falcons’ first World Cup knock out game in 20 years after participating in the USA 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup quarter finals.
— Ann Odong, FIFA (@FIFAWWC_NGA) June 20, 2019
— The NFF 🇳🇬 (@thenff) June 20, 2019
Temidayo Taiwo-Sidiq is a Political Journalist, Analyst and Social Change Advocate with major interest in Nigerian Politics, Governance and Sports.