Super Falcons have sealed a spot in next year’s Women’s Africa Cup of Nations after beating Cape Verde 2-1 at the Estádio Nacional de Cabo Verde in Praia.
The Nigerian ladies had in the reverse fixture played at the Moshood Abiola Stadium in Abuja last Thursday won emphatically 5-0.
With the absence of key players for the Justin Maduagu’s side, it was the hosts that had other plans and made their intentions known with an 8th minute goal from Racing Power striker, Ivania Moreira.
The Super Falcons pressed for an equalizer, but the Cape Verdians remained resolute taking their lone goal advantage into halftime.
The second half resumed with a Nigerian press with Madugu bringing in Esther Okoronkwo for Uchenna Kanu and the UD Tenerife forward thought she had given the away side the equaliser but her 55th minute goal was ruled offside.
The 26-year-old would have to wait seven minutes to get her much-cherished goal with a solo finish to maintain the five-goal aggregate tally.
Okoronkwo was making herself a nuisance of the Cape Verde defence and almost got an assist after she set up Toni Payne but the latter couldn’t beat the opposition goalkeeper Jacinta Rodrigues.
Acting captain Rasheedat Ajibade also came close to giving the Falcons the lead, however, her effort went inches wide of the post.
Rodrigues was kept busy by the likes of Payne and Okoronkwo to keep the scoreline deadlocked.
The breakthrough would finally come for the Super Falcons from Ajibade in the 93rd minute to seal the win.