The Nigeria women's national football team, the Super Falcons, have dominated African football for decades.
The Super Falcons have done this through great players who have donned Nigeria's famous green and white shirt, creating records and winning titles to cement their names as one of the greatest players in history for the national women's team.
Nigeria may never have been a threat to other countries to win the FIFA Women’s World Cup, yet they have provided plenty of entertainment during the nine outings they've made in the FIFA Women's World Cup.
At the time of writing, the Super Falcons are in the showpiece in Australia and New Zealand, representing Nigeria and Africa, on a quest to land Africa its first-ever title at the biggest stage of women's football.
The 11-time champions of the Africa Women’s Cup of Nations (AWCON) will forever be remembered as the country that almost knocked out Brazil at the quarter-final stage of USA 1999 Women's World Cup.
As we look forward to the Super Falcons creating history and getting past their best stage at the World Cup, let's delve into the greatest Super Falcons players to have ever played for Nigeria.
12. Precious Dede (retired)
Precious Dede was held in high esteem as one of the best goalkeepers for the Super Falcons.
She started playing for the Super Falcons in the early 2000s. Since then, she’s featured in four World Cups and four AWCONs. She became a key figure winning two AWCON titles.
She also represented Nigeria at the Olympics in 2004 and 2008.
11. Francisca Ordega (active)
Francisca Ordega currently plays as a forward for CSKA Moscow in the Russian Women's Football Championship.
She has represented Nigeria women's national football team at both the FIFA Women's World Cup and African Women's Championship.
She was also part of Nigeria's squad at the African Women's Championship of 2010 and 2014, winning both tournaments.
In 2018, She was also a member of the Nigerian squad that won the 2018 Africa Women's Cup of Nations in Ghana, A tournament where she had two goals and two assists and won the woman of the match award at the final game against South Africa.
She was part of the Super Falcons squad that won the 2021 Turkish Women's Cup in Antalya, Turkey in February and thereby becoming the first African team to win the invitational tournament.
Ordega has played in the FIFA Women's World Cup tournaments of 2011, 2015, 2019 and currently in the 2023 event in Australia/New Zealand.
10. Asisat Oshoala (active)
Asisat Oshoala is the current face of the Super Falcons. She currently plays for FC Barcelona, and she is known for her goal-scoring exploits for club and country.
Oshoala made her debut for the Super Falcons in 2014. She has gone on to win three AWCON titles, three CAF Best Player Awards, the maiden BBC Women’s Footballer of the Year gong, African Women’s Youth Player of the Year, African Women’s Championship Golden Ball, FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Golden Boot, FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Golden Ball.
Renowned for scoring goals from distance with her powerful shot, Oshoala was made a member of the order of the Niger by the former president of Nigeria, Goodluck Jonathan, in 2014.
On June 8, 2015, in Winnipeg, Canada, Oshoala opened her senior FIFA Women’s World Cup account by scoring Nigeria’s second goal in a 3-3 draw against Sweden.
She is the record holder of five African Footballer of the Year awards. And in 2023 she scored against Australia in the Women's World Cup to become the first African footballer to score in three different World Cup events.
9. Uche Eucharia (retired)
Uche Eucharia scored Nigeria’s first ever international goal and indeed the country’s first hat trick in women’s football on 16 February 1991 at the National Stadium in Lagos; when the Super Falcons defeated Black Queens of Ghana 5-1 in their first international match which was a qualifier towards the inaugural edition of the FIFA Women's World Cup that was held in China.
She was in the team that won Nigeria's first AWCON in 1991. She represented Nigeria in two Women's World Cup events.
Uche Ucheria after retirement, coached the Super Falcons and she became the first ex-Super Falcon to win the AWCON as both a player and a coach in the 2010 edition of the tournament in South Africa.
She is currently a FIFA and Confederation of African Football instructor.
8. Maureen Madu (retired)
Maureen Madu was the former most-capped Super Falcons player (101 caps) before she was dethroned by Onome Ebi.
She featured for Nigeria in four World Cup events in 1995, 1999, 2003 and 2007. She also represented Nigeria in the Sydney Summer Olympics, 2000, and the Athens Olympics in 2004.
7. Kikelomo Ajayi (retired)
Nicknamed “Mamayaro”, Kikelomo Ajayi won five AWCONs in a row between 1998 and 2006, and participated in the 1999 and 2003 World Cups and the 2000 and 2008 Summer Olympics.
She was the Nigerian women team’s captain during her days with the Super Falcons.
6. Stella Mbachu (retired)
Stella Mbachu is one of the greatest Super Falcons players in history. She represented Nigeria in four World Cup events (1993, 2003, 2007, and 2011) She also donned the famous green and white kits for Nigeria in three Summer Olympics (2000, 2004, and 2008).
She made 89 appearances for the Super Falcons of Nigeria and scored 20 goals.
5. Florence Omagbemi (retired)
Florence Omagbemi, fondly called ‘Skippo' during her active years, was a former captain of the Super Falcons who doubles as both a midfielder and a defender.
As captain, Omagbemi led the Super Falcons to the quarterfinals of the 1999 World Cup in the USA, the best showing Nigeria has ever had in the competition for both male and female category.
She represented Nigeria in four different World Cup events: 1991, 1995, 1999, and 2003. She was also part of the 2000 Summer Olympics.
After retirement, she went into coaching and she became the second ex-Super Falcon to win the AWCON as coach in 2016.
4. Onome Ebi (active)
Onome Ebi has made more appearances for Nigeria than any Super Falcons player in history. In 2023 she became the first African footballer, male or female, to play in six FIFA World Cup tournaments.
The centre-back made her debut as a 20-year-old and has gone on to feature at six World Cups (2003, 2007, 2011, 2015, 2019 and 2023)
She also played at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Ebi was also a member of the Nigerian squad in the 2008, 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2018 and 2022 editions of the AWCON, winning the tournament four times (2010, 2014, 2016 and 2018).
3. Ann Chiejine (retired)
Ann played for Nigeria at the inaugural FIFA Women's World Cup in 1991. At the peak of her football career, Ann Chiejine played a total of three World Cups donning the green and white jersey of Nigeria.
She particularly shone between the sticks for Nigeria during USA ’99 where she was part of the team that went so close to defeating Brazil in the last eight.
A veteran of three World Cups, Chiejine was one of the most experienced players in international women's football.
She is one of the best (if not the best) female goalkeeper the continent of Africa has produced. Chiejine commanded her box with authority during her playing days.
This retired Super Falcon is fondly remembered for being between the sticks for Nigeria when pregnant during the 2003 World Cup. She's the best goalkeeper for the Super Falcons.
Chiejine made the Super Falcons’ goalkeeping position hers until her retirement from international football in 2005.
2. Mercy Akide-Udoh (retired)
Mercy Akide, fondly called ‘Marvelous' is second on the Super Falcons' greatest players of all time. Only few Nigerian players have made as much impact on the grand stage as the World Cup than Akide.
Akide wrote her name in the history books as the Super Falcons marched all the way to the quarterfinals of the 1999 World Cup, scoring twice to help Nigeria reach the last eight of the event. After the tournament, she was named in the FIFA World All-Star list.
In 2001, she was named the first African Women Footballer of the Year. She played for Nigeria in three total FIFA Women’s World Cup tournaments.
The former Super Falcon won three AWCON titles in 1998, 2000 and 2002. At her retirement in 2004, she married football journalist Colin Udoh in Port Harcourt and started her family after a successful career in football.
She made such giant strides internationally and gained recognition by FIFA as one of its 15 Ambassadors for Women Football in 2005.
1. Perpetua Nkwocha (retired)
Perpetua Nkwocha is the greatest Super Falcons player in history. This legendary Super Falcon represented Nigeria in three Women's World Cup (2003, 2007 and 2011) and in two World Summer Olympics (2000 and 2004)
Nkwocha won five Africa Women's Cup of Nations titles, four Africa Women’s Footballer of the Year awards (2004, 2005, 2010, and 2011) and three AWCON Top Goalscorer awards.
She retired with 99 caps for Nigeria and scored 80 goals for the Super Falcons. She was a brilliant goal scorer, netting over 145 goals for club and country before her retirement in 2015.
Her blistering international career saw her retire as Nigeria’s leading goalscorer of all time.
This article was most recently revised and updated 2 months ago