The girls say their aim is to win the trophy for the first time.
The Nigerian female U -17 team, the Flamingoes, have got a big boost before their all-important quarter-final clash against France on Thursday as the President of the Nigerian Football Federation, NFF, presented them with a largess of $10 thousand (over N160million).
The NFF president, Aminu Maigari, who was accompanied by a vice president of the federation, Mike Umeh; Chairman of the NFF Technical Committee Chris Green; and Team Coordinator, Aisha Falode; wished the team well whilst charging them to make sure they defeat France and qualify for the semifinals of the ongoing FIFA U-17 World Cup in Azerbaijan.
“I have come here to give you girls moral support when you take on France in the quarterfinal,” Mr. Maigari said. “I have received good reports from all quarters concerning you and that you are a prayerful side. I commend you for your good behaviour and trust in God.”
He told the girls that they have the support of everyone in Nigeria, adding that the President, Goodluck Jonathan, wants them to come back with the trophy.
Speaking further, the NFF boss said he is impressed with the fighting spirit the girls exhibited against Colombia.
He assured the girls that they would be rewarded as long as they put in their best in their matches.
“We are putting our heads together at the board to work out the perfect reward for you and also upgrade your allowances and bonuses, it is now left for you to do your part and leave our part for us because we will adequately reward you,” he said.
The first assistant coach, Chris Danjuma, thanked the president and his entourage for the support the team received during the qualifiers and at the World Cup.
“We are not only overwhelmed by your presence but we are equally fired up. We promise you we will not let you down. We have also vowed that nothing will stop us from realising their dream which is lifting the trophy” Mr. Danjuma said.
Reports indicate that the Minister of Sports, Bolaji Abdullahi, has said he will come to watch the girls play if they make it to the final.
The match against France will be played at 8p.m. Azerbaijani time and 4p.m. Nigerian time on Thursday.