African champions, Nigeria departed the shores of the country yesterday for Austria, where they will set up a two –week residential camping before flying to France for the 8th FIFA Women’s World Cup taking place June 7 – July 7, 2019.
Before their departure, the newly –crowned WAFU Cup winners were received at their Serob Legacy Hotel, Abuja abode by the General Secretary of Nigeria Football Federation, Dr. Mohammed Sanusi, Director of Competitions, Mr. Bola Oyeyode and Director of Communications, Mr. Ademola Olajire.
Dr. Sanusi congratulated the ladies on their triumph at the WAFU Cup tournament in Abidjan and charged them to see it as a sign of great things to come in France.
“His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR) has already congratulated you on your victory in Abidjan, which shows how much the whole nation appreciates your effort.
“I believe the triumph in Abidjan will spur you to greater things at the World Cup in France. As you go to Austria for the final camping programme and from there to the World Cup, I want you to go with the belief and confidence that you have the capacity to defeat any team in the world.”
While assuring the girls that all their entitlements before and during the FIFA World Cup will be paid by the Federation, Sanusi challenged the girls to aim for a Nigerian record outing at the finals in France.
“It is 20 years ago that we accomplished what remains our best performance at the FIFA Women’s World Cup – a quarter final berth in USA. It is time to write a new record, and I know that as you play Norway, Korea Republic and France in the group phase, this aspiration will be close to your hearts.
“No team can browbeat you. Rather, let them fear you by the confidence and ability that you show on the pitch.”
Head Coach, Thomas Dennerby said he was edified by the comeback feat of the Falcons against host nation Cote d’Ivoire in the final of the WAFU Cup on Saturday.