The Super Falcons squad are through to the round of 16 in the ongoing 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup after a 0-0 draw against Ireland on Monday.
The Super Falcons made history as they became the first African team to make the Women's World Cup round of 16 in back-to-back occasions.
And not only that, Waldrum's team became only the first African team to keep two clean sheets in the history of the biggest women's event in football.
More heartwarming news after their qualification berth was sealed is that the captain Onome Ebi led Super Falcons squad will each pocket $60,000 which is about ₦46 million for each player as FIFA bonus for reaching the round of 16.
The FIFA money reward for every team that gets to the round of 16 amounts to $1,380, 000 (₦1.1b). This figure amounts to $60,000 per player in the 23 squad members in the Super Falcons.
Progressing into the next stage and the money that comes with it doubled the amount that the players will get for featuring in the group stages.
We know most importantly for the players, making the country proud and making history to write their names in the sands of time is what they're after, however, this monetary bonus will certainly serve as an extra motivation for the Super Falcons squad to go even further in the competition.
Can it get better for the Super Falcons squad?
Yes! As the Super Falcons squad progress further in the competition, they will enjoy larger financial rewards, and will see their FIFA earnings rise by another $30,000 to become $90,000. However, this can only happen if they are able to beat their round of 16 opponents, possibly England.
It gets even better going forward. This is because, if they go all the way to win the competition, each player on the Super Falcons squad will receive up to $270,000 in prize money, this is the highest payout in Women’s World Cup history.
Granted, nothing is impossible in football, but we can't deny the fact that the Super Falcons squad have tougher battles in store for them in the knockout rounds, and that they still have a long way to go to reach the ultimate payout winners of the competition gets.
Nevertheless, the eleven-time African Women's Cup of Nations winners will be quite confident in their chances of marching towards the title after pulling off unbeaten, with two clean sheets kept, and qualifying from a tough group into the knockout stage.
Secretary-General of FIFA commended Super Falcons squad
Not only Africans and Nigerians are happy the Super Falcons squad made it into the round of 16. Interestingly, the Secretary-General of FIFA, Fatma Samoura, was excited for the team and commended them for their efforts so far.
💃@FIFAcom secretary general Fatma Samoura @fatma_samoura celebrated our last 16 berth with us at Lang Park, after the 0-0 with #Ireland in Brisbane! 🇳🇬🔥💪#NgA #FIFAWWC #IRENGA #SoarSuperFalcons #IRL pic.twitter.com/kfvozjkSaM
— NGSuper_Falcons (@NGSuper_Falcons) July 31, 2023
“I must say that personally, I am proud of you. As you know, I am the first woman to be Secretary General of FIFA since the organization was founded in 1904, and I am also an African. So, I am easily excited by any accomplishment that glorifies women’s football and African football,” Samoura said as she spoke to the team in their dressing room after the match.
“You have won one match here, as Morocco and Zambia, but you are the only team that has made it to the knock-out stage yet. I am also excited because when FIFA President Gianni Infantino announced my name as the new FIFA Secretary-General, I was in Nigeria working for the United Nations. So, Nigeria is a second home for me.
Fatma Samoura's Super Falcons exhortation
The Secretary-General of FIFA, Fatma Samoura positively incited the Super Falcons squad to go on believing in themselves, and fight collectively as a team representing Africa in the competition.
“You should continue to believe in yourselves and play as a team, and be ready to lift the African flag higher in this tournament.” Samoura added.
What's next for the Super Falcons squad?
As already mentioned, the Super Falcons squad will face Group D winners England on 7 August, for a place in quarter-finals
The potential clash with England women's team promises to be a tough one and it will see two teams who've had at least two clean sheets apiece so far in the competition go toe-to-toe in a heavyweight bout for a place in the quarterfinals.
The English team poses a threat to the Super Falcons on paper and will also pose a threat on the field of play for the Waldrum's ladies, but Nigeria have all it takes to upset the odds, considering England have not been a scoring side so far.
The Onome Ebi-led Super Falcons can dream big, and pull off another big win like they did against Australia to send shock waves across the football world.
This article was most recently revised and updated 2 months ago