- Kalu: Super Eagles ‘ll follow up on Falcons’ victory
By Omololu Ogunmade in Abuja
Senate President , Bukola Saraki, at the weekend congratulated the Super Falcons for emerging continental champions at the Africa Women Cup of Nations (AWCON) for the eighth time.
Saraki in a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Yusuph Olaniyonu, in Abuja, specifically commended the Falcons for retaining their championship in Africa.
Falcons won the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations (AWCON) in Cameroon after beating the host team 1 – 0 to retain the AWCON title in Yaounde on Saturday.
Reacting to the victory, Saraki said the victory could not have come at a better moment.
“The record win of the AWCON Cup by the Super Falcons has again demonstrated clearly that with determination we can surmount any obstacle confronting us as a nation,” Saraki said. “I have no doubt that through team work and single-mindedness we can overcome our present economic challenges.”
He also commended the patriotism and sense of purpose of the team and their technical crew while calling for more government and private sector support to enable Nigerian sports men and women excel in their career.
Similarly, Pillar of Sports, Orji Uzor Kalu, has described Super Falcons Africa Women’s Championship triumph over the Lionesses of Cameroon in Yaounde as the tonic that will boost Eagles chances against the Indomitable Lions in the World Cup preliminaries.
Kalu praised the African champions for punishing the hosts right before their President, Paul Biya and inside the main bowl of a stadium named after their first leader, Ahmadu Ahidjo.
He said: “I got myself drunk with joy. The Falcons have wiped away our tears. It is sweet vengeance, more than what the Lions did to our Eagles in the Nations Cup. Cameroon beat Nigeria three times in the CAN grand finale, 1984,1988 and at home in Lagos in 2000 albeit through very dubious means. The Falcons have done more than that to the Lionesses. Four finals, four defeats. Home and away in 1991, South Africa in 2004, Namibia in 2014 and now in Yaounde. “
The former Abia State governor believes the Super Eagles will beat the Indomitable Lions home and away to pick the Russia 2018 World Cup ticket.
“Bring on the Cameroonians. They must suffer humiliation in Yaounde. Super Eagles are in a killer mood. Expect more buckets of tears next year, from Douala to Mamfe, Bamenda to Garoua. Vengeance is sweet”, he added.
Kalu while commending the Falcons, singled out Coach Florence Omagbemi for winning the AWC as player and Manager.
She thus joins Egypt’s Mahmoud El Gohary and Stephen Keshi as winners of CAN and AWC as player and coach.
Omagbemi captained the Super Falcons to their First victory in 1991 when they beat the Lionesses home and away, 4-0, 2-0. She went ahead to pick more laurels before relocating to the the United States. One of her team mates, Eucharia Uche, also led the team to victory as coach.
Falcons have so far won the AWC a record 8 out of 10 editions. Equatorial Guinea who have won twice relied majorly on players that have full Nigerian blood in their veins. The other two times that Falcons won starting with the 1991edition is not listed in the post 1998 when CAF took over the tournament.