Nigeria Names Loaded Provisional Squad Including 8 Local Stars For World Cup
By Iwedi Ojinmah 4 months ago
Nigeria women's coach Thomas Dennerby has named eight locally-based players in a provisional 27-woman squad for the 2019 Fifa Women's World Cup.
Chiamaka Nnadozie, Christy Ohiaeriaku, Alaba Jonathan, Chidinma Okeke, Evelyn Nwabuoku, Amarachi Okoronkwo and Alice Ogebe are currently with the Super Falcons at the West African Football Union (Wafu) Zone B tournament in Ivory Coast.
FC Barcelona striker and three-time African footballer of the year, Asisat Oshoala, leads a cast of overseas-based players.
Francisca Ordega, Desire Oparanozie, Ngozi Okobi, Rasheedat Ajibade and Rita Chikwelu are also included.
"Nigeria's final list of 23 players for the World Cup finals will emerge from this group of 27, with four players to be cut towards the end of the two-week camp in Austria," Nigeria's Football Federation (NFF) said in a statement.
"The squad will depart from Abuja for Austria on 20 May for the Avita Resort in Bad Tatzmannsdorf - the same facility where the Super Eagles had their final camping programme just before the 2018 Fifa World Cup in Russia."
Nigeria will depart Austria on 4 June for Reims, where they open their World Cup campaign against 1995 winners Norway on 8 June.
The nine-time African champions will then play South Korea in Grenoble on 12 June before facing hosts France on 17 June in Rennes.
The West Africans hold the record of being the only African nation to have qualified for every Women's World Cup since it began in 1991
However, they have failed to translate their continental dominance on the world stage, with their best performance coming in USA in 1999 when they reached the quarter-finals.
They have failed to go beyond the group stages in the last four editions in 2003, 2007, 2011 and 2015.
South Africa and Cameroon are Africa's other representatives in France and the trio will be hoping to do better than Nigeria's quarter-finals place in 1999.
Debutants South Africa will play in Group B alongside Germany, China and Spain.
Cameroon are drawn in Group E with Canada, New Zealand, and the Netherlands.
Nigeria provisional squad:
Goalkeepers: Tochukwu Oluehi (Rivers Angels); Alaba Jonathan (Bayelsa Queens); Chiamaka Nnadozie (Rivers Angels); Christy Ohiaeriaku (Confluence Queens)
Defenders: Osinachi Ohale (Vaxjo DFF, Sweden); Ngozi Ebere (Arna Bjornar, Norway); Onome Ebi (Henan Huisanhang, China); Josephine Chukwunonye (Kungsbacka DFF, Sweden); Faith Michael (Pitea IF, Sweden); Chidinma Okeke (FC Robo)
Midfielders: Cecilia Nku (Ferencvaros Torna, Hungary); Rita Chikwelu (Krstianstand DFF, Sweden); Ngozi Okobi-Okeoghene (Eskiltuna United, Sweden); Evelyn Nwabuoku (Rivers Angels); Ogonna Chukwudi (Djurgardens IF, Sweden); Halimatu Ayinde (Eskiltuna United, Sweden); Amarachi Okoronkwo (Nasarawa Amazons)
Forwards: Desire Oparanozie (En Avant Guingamp, France); Anam Imo (Malmo FC Rosengard, Sweden); Asisat Oshoala (FC Barcelona, Spain); Chinaza Uchendu (SC Braga, Portugal); Uchenna Kanu (Southeastern University, USA); Rasheedat Ajibade (Alvadsnes IL, Norway); Francisca Ordega (Shanghai W. FC); Ini-Abasi Umotong (Brighton Hove & Albion, England); Alice Ogebe (Rivers Angels)