As Nigeria's Super Falcons commenced preparations for the 2024 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations qualifier against Cape Verde, the team plunged into intensive training at the Moshood Abiola Stadium in Abuja.
The first leg is set to unfold at the MKO Abiola National Stadium on Thursday, with the return fixture scheduled for the Santiago-Estadio Nacional Blue Shark in Praia on December 5th.
Super Falcons head coach Justin Madugu sets the tone
The Super Falcons' interim head coach Justin Madugu shared insights after Monday's initial training session, expressing the challenges of international football.
Madugu emphasised the significance of playing as much as possible to maximize opportunities: “Naturally, you build your team based on the available players and the quality around you.”
He also highlighted the strategic planning involved, stating, “Every game comes with its own strategy based on the quality of your position, their playing style, and what you know of the opponents.”
Madugu outlined the team's primary goal, emphasizing the importance of aiming for victory in every game.
He added, “You don't prepare for any game expecting that the results will not go your way; you always expect that you want to win.”
The Super Falcons coach highlighted the broader impact of positive results, stating,
“It will help boost the confidence in the team, especially the younger ones coming in, and will also blend the team together.”
More players are expected to hit the team’s camp, “Hopefully, a lot of the girls will arrive tonight and tomorrow morning. By tomorrow, we anticipate having a full house, and then we'll take it from there.”
Learning from recent Super Eagles results
Acknowledging the dissatisfaction among Nigerian fans with recent male team results, Madugu sees the upcoming qualifiers as an opportunity to bring joy to the nation.
He expressed, “Nigerians are not happy based on the results we've been posting of recent, especially with the male team, so we see it as an opportunity to put smiles on the faces of Nigerians too.”
The Super Falcons coach discussed the team's adaptable approach based on available players and opponents' styles, stating, “The approach might be different, but the ultimate aim is to ensure that we put up the same type of performance that the girls had in the last one.”
Emphasising the importance of scoring, he added, “We should ensure we score as many goals as possible; the bottom line, like I said, is winning the game.”
With the Super Falcons gearing up for a crucial qualifier, the blend of strategic planning and the determination to secure a spot in the 2024 WAFCON finals is evident in the team's focused preparations.
This article was most recently revised and updated 3 months ago