Nigeria’s Super Falcons will begin their campaign at the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada today when they face a familiar foes Sweden.
The Falcons’ best performance at FIFA Women world cup was in 1999 in USA when they reached quarterfinal and lost 4-3 to Brazil by the ‘Golden Goal’.
The coach Edwin Okon-tutored side will be looking forward to secure first win for Nigeria over Sweden.
Both nations have met twice in this competition previously.
Their first meeting was in 2003, when Sweden beat Nigeria 3-0, while the second was at the 2007 World Cup and it ended in a 1-1 draw where Cynthia Uwuak scored for Nigeria.
Nigeria, Cameroon and Cote d’Ivoire fly Africa’s flag in Canada
Former Nigeria international Ayisat Yusuf, who was part of the team who drew with Sweden in 2007 said the African champions could get their first win over Sweden in Canada if they did not give the Swedish space to operate.
“I remember that game, it was a tough one, I was introduced in the second half. I was the room mate of the goal scorer, Cynthia Uwuak,” she recalled.
“Falcons can actually beat Sweden this time because impossibility is nothing. The Swedes are always a tactically good team, they are also fast. All what Falcons need to do is to be fully focused and make sure they mark them strength to strength, they should also assist each other on the pitch and not be selfish, with this, I think Falcons can win.”
Three members of the 2007 Falcons team, namely Onome Ebi, Precious Dede and Perpetua Nkwocha, are in the current team in Canada.
Ayisat Yusuf was on the Super Falcons squad to the 2004 African Women’s Championship, 2007 Women’s World Cup and the 2008 Olympics.
For their seventh consecutive appearance at the international showpiece, 1999 quarter-finalists Nigeria will be looking to reach the last four, while newcomers Cameroon and Côte d’Ivoire will be happy to get through the first round.
The three West African nations owe their presence in Canada to a top three finish at the 2014 African Women’s Championship, where the Super Falcons claimed their ninth continental crown.

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