Nigeria's women's national team, Super Falcons, will battle with their counterparts from South Africa, Banyana Banyana, and others for the 2023 Women’s African Team of the Year at the CAF Awards.
Ten nominees were initially announced by CAF for the award some weeks back, with the Super Falcons and Banyana Banyana leading the list, which includes Burkina Faso, Burundi, Ghana, Malawi, Morocco, Senegal, Tanzania and Zambia.
That list has now been trimmed to the final five: Morocco, Nigeria, South Africa, Senegal, and Zambia.
The shortlist is in! 👇
— CAF (@CAF_Online) November 27, 2023
Without any doubt, the Super Falcons and Banyana Banyana are huge favourites for the award after a splendid outing at the Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand some months ago.
Meanwhile, the winner will be decided after votes from a voting panel consisting of CAF Technical Committee, media professionals from Member Associations, Head Coaches & Captains of Member Associations.
The Awards Gala is to be graced by the crème de la crème of African football on 11 December 2023 in Marrakech, Morocco.
Latest update from the Super Falcons camp
Coach Justin Madugu has decided to replace star forward Asisat Oshoala and midfielder Jennifer Echegini after the duo voluntarily opted out of the Super Falcons’ squad that is due to contest a 2024 Women Africa Cup of Nations final qualifying fixture against Cape Verde, with the first leg in Abuja in four days.
Madugu had earlier called 21 players to the Super Falcons’ camp but he has been forced to make changes before the fixture now.
NFF’s Assistant Director (Technical), Abdulrafiu Yusuf, offered a bit of clarification on the reason why the players decided to opt out of the encounter.
“We were surprised that they had the flight tickets for so long and did not say anything, only for them to send different messages on Saturday that they would be unable to make the trip. However, Coach Madugu has moved swiftly to call up replacements for them,” disclosed Yusuf.
Midfield Halimatu Ayinde, who missed the 2024 Olympics qualifying fixture against Ethiopia last month, is still out injured, and forward Ifeoma Onumonu also requested to be left out, saying she is nursing an injury.
Defender Michelle Alozie told the team administrator that she will be undergoing surgery.
Madugu has called up Portugal-based Peace Efih to once again fill the space vacated by Ayinde, while Rivers Angels’ midfielder Motunrayo Ezekiel will take the place of Christy Ucheibe, who is unable to travel to Nigeria from her base in Portugal.
Nigeria U20 Girls' ace forward Chioma Olise will take the place of US-based Echegini, while Chiamaka Chukwu of Rivers Angels has been called up to take Oshoala’s place.
Next Super Falcons match – Cape Verde
The Super Falcons will host the first leg of the 2024 Women Africa Cup of Nations final qualifying fixture against their counterparts from Cape Verde at the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja on Thursday, 30th November, with the second leg scheduled for the Santiago-Estadio Nacional Blue Shark in Praia on Tuesday, 5th December.
This article was most recently revised and updated 3 months ago