From Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
Bronze-winning Nigerian girls, the Flamingos, yesterday arrived the country from India after finishing third in the just concluded FIFA U-17 Women World Cup.
The girls that arrived the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja early afternoon on Tuesday, later got warn handshakes from the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, on arrival at the MKO Abiola Stadium where they were formally received by many Nigerian supporters.
Present during the reception include Permanent Secretary and Directors in the Sports Ministry, the President of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Ibrahim Gusau, first vice president of the NFF, Felix Anyansi, General Secretary, Dr Mohammed Sanusi and few other board members.
Reflecting on what helped the girls record the mileage, the NFF President disclosed that they had the best of preparations, including early local and foreign camping, playing quality grade pre-tournament local and international friendlies among other measures.
“They had good preparations ahead of the tournament. They had both local and foreign camping just as they played quality friendly matches especially outside the country. They did us proud and I promise we will everything within our powers to ensure that the team will graduate to the next level,” he said.
On his own part, Dare commended the girls for making the nations proud on and off the pitch of play, charging the NFF leadership to ensure a promising future for them.
“We are happy with your achievement in the tournament. I will commend the NFF for the preparation and putting the logistics in place throughout the qualifiers to the tournament proper.
“As the ministry we will approach Mr President to seek for appointment for you to meet with him when he returns. I am not going to preempt Mr President, but I can assure you that you will get a presidential handshake as rewards for your efforts,” he promised.