BY MONICA IHEAKAM
Nigeria’s U-20 women’s team, the Falconets, were in full flight on Saturday as they gave their qualification for this year’s FIFA U-20 World Cup in France a huge boost with their 2-0 away in South Africa .
The African favorites under the watchful eyes of Coach Chris Danjuma, silenced hard talking Basetsana at their back- yard in the first-leg of the final qualifying play -off in Polokwane.
Two first-half goals from Rasheedat Ajibade and Anam Imo was all the two-time World Cup silver winning team needed to confidently inch closer to berthing in France.
After dominating in the early part of the first half, the Falconets deservedly took the lead in the 30th minute through Rasheedat Ajibade whose clever effort went past the South African keeper.
In the 35th minute, the Falconets doubled their lead thanks to Imo.
Imo almost got on the score sheet again in the 55th minute but her shot came off the cross bar.
Falconets, business -like in the field of play, had seen off the likes of Tanzania 9-0 and Morocco on 6-2 goals aggregate respectively to get to the final qualification stage for the show piece billed to kick off from August 5- 24 , 2018 in France.
The return leg comes up in Benin City, Edo State on January 27, 2018 with the winners on aggregate picking one of Africa’s two tickets for the U-20 Women’s World Cup.
The other first leg play-off tie between Cameroon and Ghana is billed for today, January 14 in Yaoundé.
Aside from Nigeria and Ghana, Congo DR are the only other African team ever to have graced the U-20 Women’s World Cup, a feat they achieved in 2006 and 2008.