.Demands improvement on global stage
By MADUABUCHI KALU
A member of the immediate past Delta State Sports Commission, Hon. Ejiro Etoroma, has commended the Super Falcons, who on Saturday made history in Ghana as they defeated the hard fighting Bayana Bayana of South Africa to win this year’s Africa Women Cup of Nations in Ghana.
The Nigerian women who took their pound of flesh from their South African counterparts on Saturday had at the group stage suffered a surprise 1-0 defeat from their more mobile South African women;however, Saturday presented a great opportunity for the Nigerian Women to avenge the defeat they suffered in group stage in the hands of the South Africans and they took it with both hands.
According to the experienced sports administrator, who spoke to The Oracle Today Sports moments after the 120 minutes encounter that saw both sides unable to find the back of the net, the Super Falcon have once again etched their names in the history books by conquering Africa for the record 9th time.
Hon. Etoroma, therefore, charged the Nigerian women to up their game on the global stage saying their football prowess should not be confined on the continent rather they should go into the global stage and show they are a force to reckon with. Etoroma,however, expressed optimism that the Super Falcons are going to show the stuff they are made off since they have a foreign coach who is versed with women football.
“We have won the Africa Women Cup of Nations again. We have won it for a record nine times. This is great and I am delighted,” Hon. Etoroma began.
“It was a grueling encounter. The South African ladies are no pushovers. They were better on the ball than our women and I believe it is because they seem to be younger than our women and that calls for younger players to be injected into the Super Falcons.
“Bayana Bayana were determined to cart away the trophy but trust our women, they refused to yield to their pressure. The South African showed determination and hard work but the zeal to repay them in their own coin fired the Falcons on to resist everything that they threw at them and at the end of the day we emerged victorious.
“Now that the Super falcons have been able to win the continental highest football showpiece for a record nine times, it is time they show the stuff they are made on the global stage and the Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) that will be taking place in France next year presents a great opportunity for them to register their maturity in the round leather game at the global stage.
“Of course they have done extremely well on the continent having dominated the continental football for a long time. They should up their game at the global stage;so that they will not be tagged “continental champions’ and global under-achievers,” Etoroma said.
“Having said that, I am optimistic that henceforth; they are going to prove their worth at the global stage since their wish to have a foreign coach has been met by the Amaju Pinnick-led Board of the NFF through the appointment of Thomas Dennerby from Sweden.
“I believe with the experience of Thomas Dennerby in global women football, the Super Falcons are going to become a formidable women football force on the global stage,” Etoroma explained.
Speaking further, Etoroma commended Amaju Pinnick-led board of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF)for the support they gave the women and the monetary incentive that motivated them to ensure they had their pound of flesh from the South Africans.
“I want to commend the Amaju Pinnick led board of the NFF for the support and encouragement they gave the Super Falcons this time round.
“I was delighted seeing Amaju dancing with the players during the trophy presentation. Of course Amaju can never carry last!
“The Board of the NFF have done very well in ensuring that this particular team are motivated. For the very first time, they women were promised $10,000 which is about N4million each to win the trophy outside their normal allowances, which to me is a welcome development. I believe that that monetary incentive by the Amaju led board somehow motivated our women to take the decision to rather die on the pitch than to see the trophy slip off their hands. That is the spirit and I hope it will continue for a long time to come.
“I believe that this victory of the Super Falcons is special to Amaju Pinnick because this is the first continental competition since he was reelected as NFF’s present and it was won by our women. This means that Amaju in less than three months of returning as the President of the NFF has recorded a major achievement on the continent via the Super Falcons victory on Saturday in Accra, Ghana.
“It is my prayer that other successes will follow the Super Falcons historic 9th AWCON on Saturday,” Etoroma enthused.