The Super Falcons, Nigeria’s women’s national football team, are set to participate in the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. Ahead of their departure, a send-forth dinner will be held, which will be attended by the First Lady, Oluremi Tinubu, and other top government officials. The dinner, organized by the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF), will take place at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel in Abuja on Saturday. In attendance will be the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Sports and Youth Development, Ismaila Abubakar, as well as other sports officials, the NFF President, Ibrahim Musa Gusau, the General Secretary, Mohammed Sanusi, and various football stakeholders.
Following the dinner, the team, along with technical and administrative officials, will embark on a 15-day camping program in Australia. The FIFA Women’s World Cup is scheduled to take place from July 20 to August 20. Nigeria’s first match in the tournament is against Canada on July 21, followed by matches against Australia and the Republic of Ireland on July 27 and July 31, respectively.
Australia and New Zealand 2023 will be the largest FIFA Women’s World Cup in history, featuring 32 teams, the same number as the men’s tournament in Qatar last year. This edition is unique as it is jointly hosted by two countries and marks the first-ever FIFA senior competition to be hosted by nations from two different confederations: Australia in the Asian confederation and New Zealand in Oceania.
Among the players representing Nigeria, Onome Ebi, the team captain, will be one of the oldest participants in the tournament at the age of 40. She will join Brazil’s Marta and Canada’s Christine Sinclair as the only women to have played in six FIFA Women’s World Cup tournaments.
Prior to the send-forth dinner, the Australian High Commission will host the Super Falcons to a dinner, arranged by the Acting High Commissioner, Her Excellency Leanne Johnston.
Nigeria is placed in Group ‘B’ alongside Australia, Canada, and the Republic of Ireland. The Super Falcons have previously faced the Canadian and Australian teams in previous World Cups, with Nigeria drawing 3-3 against Canada in 1995 and winning 1-0 in 2011. Their encounter with Australia in the 2015 World Cup ended in a 2-0 victory for the Australians.