India 2022: Gusau to Lead Support for Flamingos Against Colombia

By: Gyang Dakwo

President of Nigeria Football Federation, Ibrahim Gusau will lead the support group when the  U-17 girls, Flamingos tackle Colombia in the semi-finals of this year’s FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Goa on Wednesday.

The NFF boss, who has spoken with the players and officials during their earlier games in the tournament, will attend the semi-final showdown at the Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Goa. It is the first semi-final, starting at 4 pm (12noon Nigeria time) with the second semi-final between Germany and Spain to kick-off three-and-half hours later.

The Flamingos are the first Nigeria team to be involved in a tournament during the Presidency of Ibrahim Gusau. They beat the United States America in a penalty shootout after a 1-1 draw in a World Cup quarter-final and now to face Colombia in the semi-finals.

Victory over Colombia, who defeated the only other African team to make the knockout stage, Tanzania 3-0 in the last eight – will shoot the Flamingos into Sunday’s final.

The Flamingo’s campaign seems to be a replay of the Nigeria U-20 girls, Falconets in Germany 12 years ago, at least from the quarter-final stage.

In 2010, in what was the first international tournament for any Nigeria team under the Presidency of Aminu Maigari, the Falconets had beaten the United States of America 4-2 in a penalty shootout in a FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup quarter-final after both teams tied 1-1 in regulation time in Augsburg.

Four days later, a 2nd-minute goal by Ebere Orji at the Bielefelder Alm in the city of Bielefeld condemned Colombia to defeat in the semifinal, and the Falconets squared up to Germany in the final.

It is also remarkable that Germany, Nigeria’s opponent in the final in Germany 12 years ago, is also in the semi-finals in India. They play Spain in the second semi-final on Wednesday.