Beat USA, get N12m, NFF tells Falcons
• Omidiran’s arrival excites players
To give the Super Falcons the motivation they need to excel in today’s game against the U.S., the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), yesterday reminded the girls that the $60,000 offered them is not a mere promise.
“I have made it clear to them that the $60,000, which our President (Amaju Pinnick) promised them will be handed over to them immediately if they can beat U.S.A on Tuesday, NFF board member and chairperson, Women Football Committee, Mrs. Dilichukwu Onyeadima, told The Guardian.
The Falcons, who drew their first game 3-3 against Sweden and lost 0-2 to Australia, must win today against USA to progress to the next stage of the championship.
Their last encounter with USA at China 2007 World Cup ended 1-0 in favour of the Americans. According to Onyedimma, the NFF’s carrots for the girls would go up if they qualified from the group stage.
Meanwhile, there was excitement in the Super Falcons’ camp following the arrival of House of Representatives member, Ayo Omidiran, in Vancouver.
Omidiran, an ex-board member of the NFF and one of the pioneer financiers of women football in Nigeria (Proprietress of Omidiran Babes), arrived Vancouver Sunday afternoon. The news of her arrival excited players and officials of the Falcons.
“It means Nigerians back home are still supporting us despite not doing well against Australia,” Onyeadima said. “The girls were so happy to see Ayo in the hotel.” Omidiran met with the players and their officials yesterday, where she urged them to go all out and beat U.S. today.
“The President and every Nigerian back home are solidly behind you. Girls, go and show USA that Nigeria is a force to reckon with in this game of women football,” she told the team.
Meanwhile, former Falcons defender, US-based Florence Iweta, has advised the players to work on their attack in today’s game against USA, because “poor attack had always been our problem even in our days with the team. The players were not in their best in the game against Australia, compared to what they played against Sweden.
“If they must beat USA, then, a player like Ngozi Okobi, must do those great work she did in the match against Sweden in today’s match.
They must know that USA is not a push over, so it will take hard work to conquer them,” Iweta, who was part of the Falcons to Sweden ‘96, USA ‘99 and USA 2003 World Cup said in a chat with The Guardian yesterday.