Falconets Off to South Korea

The U-20 Women National Team, known as Falconets, departed for Korea Republic on Wednesday for a two-week final training camp ahead of this year’s FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup finals.

A delegation including 25 players flew out of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja in the morning to catch an Emirates Ariline flight to Dubai from Lagos in the afternoon, from where the contingent will proceed to Seoul on Thursday morning.

Head Coach Edwin Okon, whose girls swept past Zimbabwe and Democratic Republic of Congo in the African qualifiers without conceeding a goal, said his mission is to get the reigning vice champions of the world in super competition-mood before the end of the two-week camping period.

“We have conquered Africa and now, it is time to prepare for the world. We have a massive task on our hands because the 2010 Class got to the final of the World Cup. We just have to prepare ourselves adequately to be able to go one better,” said Okon.

The Nigeria Football Federation has perfected all arrangements for the team’s two-week stay at the Namhe Sports Park, where Okon will drill the 25 players and finally drop four of them to make a final list of 21 for the tournament. A number of friendly matches have been sealed.

The Falconets play Korea Republic in their opening match on Sunday, August 19, in what is expected to be a showdown of huge proportions at the Saitama World Cup Stadium.

While the Falconets finished second behind hosts Germany at the last edition of the competition two years ago, Korea Republic picked up  bronze after beating Colombia in the third place match. Nigeria will then play Brazil (also in Saitama) on August 22 before clashing with Italy at the Kobe World Cup Stadium on August 26 in the last group match.

The 25 players on flight to Korea Republic:

Ibubeleye Whyte, Blessing Edoho, Gloria Ofoegbu, Ugo Njoku, Cecilia Nku, Jennifer Osawaru, Esther Sunday, Ebere Orji, Desire Oparanozie,

Ngozi Okobi, Stella Henry, Ugochi Okafor, Asisat Oshoala, Josephine Chukwunonye, Damilola Akano, Francisca Ordega, Charity Adule, Osarenoma Igbinovia, Chioma Nwankwo, Prudent Ugoh, Fasilat Adeyemo, Winifred Eyebhoria, Chidinma Okoro, Abosede Olukayode, Grace Aluko.

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