WAFCON: Buhari, Sports Minister Salute Gallant Falcons

President Muhammadu Buhari and the minister of youth and sports development, Mr Sunday Dare, applauded the gallant display of Nigeria’s Super Falcons against the Moroccan female national football team in the second semi-final match of the ongoing 12th African Women’s Cup of Nations (WAFCON) in Morocco on Monday’s night.


President Buhari in a statement by his media aide, Femi Adesina, said he is encouraged by the doggedness, resilience and professionalism of the girls, who despite playing with two players down before a home crowd showed their quality and class.


Despite defeat to Morocco, the President believed great things are expected from the team and like all Nigerians; he will be cheering them on at future outings.


‘Although many will be disappointed with the Moroccan victory on penalties, there are many positive outcomes for the Nigerian team to take home and prepare better for the next tournament,’’ President Buhari said.The Sports Minister on his part, eulogized the Falcons for their doggedness, saying they are champions and Nigerians are proud of the team.
“Your resilience, character, and management of the game must be commended. I salute your doggedness, commitment and fighting spirit. For holding the Moroccans in front of an over 45,000 capacity crowd you have once again displayed the never say die attitude of true Nigerians.
“Even when down to nine players after those red cards, you held your own. You are our champions. Nigeria is proud of you.
“It was a match I followed very keenly and I am so proud you displayed the Nigerian spirit. I am proud of this team, even in defeat.”
The nine times champions bowed out gallantly with pride, losing 5-4 on penalties to hosts Morocco after the semi-final clash at the Prince Moulay Abdellah Stadium Rabat ended 1-1 after extra time.
Halimatu Ayinde was red- carded in the 48th minute of the match, and the Falcons made it 1-0 in the 62nd minute through a Yasmin Mrabet own goal after Rasheedat Ajibade sent a cross into the box.
Sanaa Mssoudy netted the equaliser for the Atlas Lionesses four minutes later and Ajibade was shown a red card in the 71st minute. But the Nigerian ladies took the game to penalties despite playing with nine women for the remainder of the game


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