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U20 Women's World Cup Qualification Africa

U20 WWC Qualifiers: Nigeria hit Cameroon for three

12:38 AM IST 06/02/22
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Christopher Danjuma’s side are on the cusp of qualifying for the global football showpiece billed for Costa Rica this year

The Nigeria U20 women’s team subdued Cameroon 3-0 in Saturday’s 2022 Fifa U20 Women’s World Cup fourth round, second leg qualifier.

A brace from Esther Onyenezide and a second-half effort from Precious Vincent helped the Falconets beat the visitors at the MKO Abiola National Stadium in Abuja.

Going into the make or break encounter, the West Africans had settled for a 0-0 draw against the Cameroonians in the first leg played at the Japoma Stadium in Douala.

Needing an outright win to progress, Christopher Danjuma’s girls approached the encounter in a business-like manner.

That paid off in the 20th minute when Onyenezide put her team ahead after profiting from shambolic defending from the visiting side.

Eight minutes before the half time break, Vincent doubled Nigeria’s advantage as Cameroon struggled in their quest to restore parity.

In the second half, the hosts did not take their foot off the pedal as they continued to dominate ball possession. However, they missed a couple of clear cut opportunities.

With 18 minutes left on the clock, player of the match Onyenezide completed her double to kill off any ambition of their opposition restoring launching a comeback.

Thanks to this result, Nigeria have progressed to the final round of the qualification series on a 3-0 aggregate triumph – where they will square up against either Morocco or Senegal for a place in Costa Rica.

Only two teams will represent Africa at the global football showpiece slated for August 10–28, 2022.

Since the start of the competition in Canada 2002, the Falconets have participated in all editions of the Fifa U20 Women’s World Cup.

Their best performance was a second-place finish at the 2010 and 2014 editions, staged in Germany and Canada, respectively.

In 2012, they returned home as the fourth-best team having bowed 2-1 to hosts Japan with Yoko Tanaka and Asuka Nishikawa scoring the goals for the Asians at the National Olympic Stadium in Tokyo.

Initially, the tenth edition was cancelled due to the outbreak of Covid-19.

Japan are the reigning world champions. They defeated Spain 3-1 in the final of the 2018 edition played at the Stade de la Rabine in Vannes.