By: Gyang Dakwo
Nigeria’s under-20 national women’s football team began its campaign on a bright note by handing an upset 1-0 defeat to a strong French side in the group C match of the FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup on Thursday.
The two teams engaged in a thrilling contest that started with a twenty minutes delay due to a heavy downpour and effectively canceled out each other’s moves with the Falconets showing supremacy in the game.
Nigeria dictated the pace of the match from the start and had the majority of ball possession of 52 percent against France’s 48 percent.
Both teams had the same shots on goal and one yellow card each.
In the second half, both teams struggled for the ball with Mercy Idoko trying to score for Nigeria but the French goalie frustrated her efforts in the 56th minute.
France fought well a few minutes later and netted the ball but was overruled by the referee.
In the 85th minute, Flourish Sabastine broke the deadlock with Mercy Idoko’s pass which fetched them the late winning goal.
The French girls continued to fight back but were unable to get any goal until the game closed in favor of Nigeria.
Nigeria will face South Korea on Sunday in its next match.
Group C includes France, South Korea, and Canada.
Meanwhile, Ghana started poorly with a 3-0 loss to the United States of America (USA) in a Group D match.
The young USA side displayed its domination over Ghana for the majority of the match as the team had a significantly better pass accuracy and possession than the Ghanian team.
The competition, which started on August 10 will end on August 28 in Costa Rica.