India 2022: Bankole dedicates Flamingos victory over USA to Nigerians

By Harry Awurumibe, Africa’s No.1 Women Football Journalist 

Flying Nigerian Flag Higher in India…The Flamingos taking a victory laps with Nigerian Flag after eliminating Team USA U-17 Women’s football team 4-3 on penalties to book semi final ticket.

Head Coach of Nigeria’s U-17 women’s football team, the Flamingos has dedicated his wards’ qualification for the country’s first-ever semi final stage of the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup, to Nigerian fans.

Nigeria on Friday at  DY Patil Stadium in Mumbai, India defeated championship favourites, the United States of America (USA) U-17 side 4-3 in a penalty shoot-out after the regulation time had ended 1-1 in the first quarter final match.
The Flamingos’ wing-back, Mamuzo Edafe put Nigeria ahead from the spot in the 26′ after a Nigerian attacker was brought down by USA defender right in the edge of the penalty box. 
The Americans fought back gallantly by raiding the Nigerian goal area and their efforts paid off when Onyeka Gamero assisted fast-paced Anita 
Villarreal to score the equaliser in the 40′. The scoreline remained same till the end of the first half. 
On resumption, USA threw the kitchen sink on the Nigerians as the Flamingos goalkeeper, Faith Omilana was kept busy but it was a huge relief for the Africans that several mistakes of the goalie did not result to a defeat. 
However, the encounter was decided on penalty shoot-out after 90′  and Nigeria triumphed 4-3 by scoring four of her five kicks while the USA lost two kicks through E. Adames and M. Bhuta.
Nigeria’s penalty scorers are E. Etim, E. Offiong, M. Usani and M. Edafe, after retaking her kick while defender Folorunsho lost her kick by sending the ball high off the post.

Winning Coach…Bankole Oloowokere (middle) leading his players to the field for warm up before the match against Team USA U -17 side.

But speaking immediately after the tension-soaked match in Mumbai, the Flamingos Head Coach, Bankole Olowookere said he is dedicating his team’s victory over the USA to Nigerian  fans. 

Said he: “We are so happy to win the match and we are  dedicating the victory to our supporters back home. They have been supporting us and praying for us. We dedicate this win to them”.
The Technical Adviser of Nigeria Women’s Football League (NWFL) premier league side, Naija Ratel FC of Abuja, however urged the Nigerian football fans to continue to support the team in prayers for the battles ahead.
Nigeria will either meet Colombia or fellow Africans Tanzania in the semi final stage but whatever happens on the way Nigeria is sure to play two more matches before returning to the country at the end of the competition. 
Quarter-final Result
🇺🇸USA 1-1 NIGERIA🇳🇬  (PSO: 3-4)
⚽0 – 1  26′ O. Edafe (PK)
⚽1 – 1  40′ A. Villarreal (🅰️ O. Gamero)
⚽E. Adames, ❌E. Emri, ⚽T. Suarez, ⚽M. Bhuta, ❌R. Jackson
⚽E. Etim, ⚽E. Offiong, ⚽M. Usani, ❌C. Folorunsho, ⚽O. Edafe

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