The Super Falcons, nine-time African champions, secured their spot in the 13th Africa Women’s Cup of Nations with an impressive 2-1 victory over Cape Verde on Tuesday evening, sealing a 7-1 aggregate win in the final round of qualifications.
Despite Cape Verde’s early lead with Ivania Tavares Moreira’s 9th-minute goal, the Super Falcons, supported by the Nigerian community in the stands, countered the pressure, repelled attacks, and eventually gained control. Despite several attempts, the scoreline persisted as both teams headed into halftime.
Super Falcons’ interim head coach, Justin Madugu, made strategic changes to his squad in the second half, bringing in Esther Onyenezide and Esther Okoronwko for Peace Efih and Uchenna Kanu. This substitution proved beneficial as the Super Falcons seized command of the game. Okoronwko leveled the score for Nigeria just two minutes after the hour mark, and stand-in Rasheedat Ajibade secured the winning goal for the visitors in stoppage time to ensure victory for Nigeria and an overwhelming aggregate win that takes the Falcons into next year’s finals as undoubtedly the team to beat.