Nigeria Super Falcons head coach Randy Waldrum has invited 30 players for a nine-day training camp in Abuja, as part of preparations for the final qualifying race for the 12th Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (AWCON) billed for Morocco from July 2 to 23, 2022.
The invited players, consisting of 15 home –based and 15 foreign –based professionals, will camp from Monday, November 22 to Tuesday, November 30, 2021, in a bid to improve the team’s off- field and on-field connection, as well as mastery of technical skills and tactical strategies that will give the nine-time women’s AFCON champions, the edge over their opponents.
Leading the homebase charge are FC Robo forward Gift Monday and Rivers Angels star striker, Vivian Ikechukwu – who scored two goals apiece during Aisha Buhari Invitational Tournament, in Lagos in September – alongside Bayelsa Queens shotstopper, Onyinyechukwu Okeke, defender Esther Ogbonna, midfielder Goodness Onyebuchi and forward Mary-Ann Ezenagu.
38-year old veteran defender, Onome Ebi leads the foreign–based cast, alongside her team-mate at Minsk FC, Regina Otu, midfieder Rasheedat Ajibade, defenders Patricia George and Ashley Plumptre and forward Desire Oparanozie.
The Abuja camp is Super Falcons’ fifth preparatory programme this year, following 8-day Vienna camp, the Turkish Women’s Cup Tournament in Alanya, the USA Women National Team Summer Series in Texas and the Aisha Buhari Invitational Tournament in Lagos.
The team reached the final round of the 12th Women AFCON qualifiers after a 2-1 aggregate win over rivals Ghana, and will face another West African side, Cote d’Ivoire for a place in Morocco. The final round of qualifiers will hold in February, 2022, with the first leg taking place in Lagos.
Goalkeepers: Onyinyechukwu Okeke (Bayelsa Queens); Ibubeleye Whyte (Rivers Angels); Uchenna Chukwu (Nasarawa Amazons)
Defenders: Onome Ebi (Minsk FC, Belarus); Maureen Okpala (Nasarawa Amazons); Patricia George (SC Sand, Germany); Ashley Plumptre (Leicester City, England); Miracle Joseph (Bayelsa Queens); Joy Duru (Nasarawa Amazons); Nicole Payne (West Virginia University, USA); Michelle Alozie (Houston Dash, USA); Glory Edet (Bayelsa Queens); Akudo Ogbonna (Edo Queens)
Midfielders: Adekite Dada (Watford FC, England); Peace Efih (Kiryat Gat, Israel); Yetunde Aluko (WFC Ramat Hasharon, Israel); Amanda Mbadinuju (Bayelsa Queens); Goodness Onyebuchi (Edo Queens); Grace Igboamalu (Bayelsa Queens); Toni Oyedupe Payne (Sevilla FC, Spain); Regina Otu (Minsk FC, Belarus); Christy Ucheibe (Minsk FC, Belarus)
Forwards: Rasheedat Ajibade (Atletico Madrid, Spain); Esther Okoronkwo (AS Saint Etienne, France); Mary-Ann Ezenagu (Rivers Angels); Desire Oparanozie (Dijon FC, France); Vivian Ikechukwu (Rivers Angels); Gift Monday (FC Robo); Juliet Bassey (Bayelsa Queens); Chinonyerem Macleans (Gonirk Leczna (Poland)