By Harry Awurumibe, Africa’s No. 1 Women’s Football Journalist
Apparently to clear any doubts of the team’s ability to compete after suffering a 1-2 loss in the opening match against Germany, Nigeria’s U-17 women’s football team, Flamingos on Friday in Goa, India, bounced back to the winning ways with a 4-0 thrashing of hapless New Zealand U-17 women’s football side.
Two goals in each half of the match by forwards, Aminat Bello 16′, Miracle Usani 34, Taiwo Afolabi 75′ and Etim Edidiong 90+5′, gifted Nigeria her first victory and three points in the ongoig competition.
Bello put Nigeria ahead early in the game when she converted a nice cross from Tumininu Adesina before the scorer of Nigeria’s lone goal in the first match against Germany, Usani made it two goals.
Nigeria would have been three goals clear in the 40th minute but Bello missed a sitter after a fine build up orchestred by the combination of Opeyemi Ajakaye and team captain Alvine Dah Zossu.
Nigeria continued to dominate New Zealand in the second half as Usani’s 48th minute free-kick was saved by goalkeeper Fienberg Danieli just as she parried over the bar a towering header by Ajakaye in the 61st minute.
However, a 75th minute Afolabi goal stood after Video Assistant Referee (VAR) review while Etim who plays for Nigeria women’s premier league club, Bayelsa Queens made it 4-0 in the 90+5 minute with another out of the 18 yard box blinder.
Nigeria will have everything to play for when the Africans meet with Chile in the last group match to determine the leader and second team of the group.