Falcons Lose to France, Remain Proud of their Performance

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SWITZERLAND, JUNE 18 – The Super Falcons of Nigeria have crashed out of the women’s World Cup after losing 1-0 to France in a controversial match on Monday evening, but remain proud of their performance.

It took a remarkable six-minute period in the second half for what had been a largely uneventful Women’s World Cup match to come to life in Rennes as France beat Nigeria 1-0 in dramatic fashion.


The task facing the Super Falcons before a partisan 28,267 crowd at Roazhon Park had always been deemed a formidable one.
France had won 15 of its last 16 games coming into its final group match — conceding only six times in the process — but the Super Falcons seemed up to the task until the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) came into play in the 73rd minute and created a period of theater.

Nigeria defender Ngozi Ebere had brought Viviane Asseyi down inside the box, leaving the referee with little option but to award the spot kick once Melissa Borjas had opted for a VAR check. Ebere was subsequently shown a red card for a second bookable offense, while France defender Wendi Renard went on to hit the post from the spot — only for VAR to give France a lifeline by penalizing Nigeria goalkeeper Chiamaka Nnadozie for stepping away from her line before the ball was hit.

Renard retook the penalty and this time dispatched her effort with aplomb to give the hosts what proved to be the match-winning goal. In 18-year-old Nnadozie — who became the youngest goalkeeper to keep a clean sheet at a World Cup in Nigeria’s victory over South Korea — Nigeria had a player who had stood up to whatever came her way, until the teenager suffered a harsh lesson on the biggest stage of all.

Nigerians have hailed the performance of their team against France despite the loss.

One of the biggest football personalities in the country, former Super eagles captain, Sunday Oliseh said this after the match:

“Extremely proud of our Super falcons of Nigeria vs France at the world cup. These girls gave it everything against a French side cheered on by a near full stadium & a doubtful retaken penalty. I am sad,disappointed, but proud of these girls!”

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