African Champions, the Super Falcons of Nigeria suffered a 1-0 defeat to Jamaica in their opening match of the 2021WNT Summer Series in Houston, Texas.
In a game thoroughly dominated by the Carribeans, Houston Dash defender Deneisha Blackwood netted what turned out to be the winner in the 51st minute when she hit home a brilliant finish after a cut back by Vyan Sampson.
Indeed, the Nigerians had goalkeeper Tochukwu Oluehi to thank for keeping the score line respectable as the Jamaicans sliced through their African opponents at will, especially in the first half of the game decided at the BBVA Stadium in Houston.
Blackwood could have given the Reggae Girlz the lead in the 25th minute after Glory Ogbonna fouled Jody Brown inside the penalty box. Oluehi, a master at stopping spot kicks once again weaved the magic by denying Blackwood’s tamely shot effort.
Randy Waldrum’s Falcons showed more purpose in the second half with the Introduction of two American University graduates Michelle Alozie and Ijeoma Okoronkwo (who came on late in the first half).
Alozie, an attacker but playing in the right wing back position went closest to equalising for the African champions but her left footed effort from 25 yards came off the cross bar.
Okoronkwo had earlier got the ball to the back of the net but her effort was rightly chalked off for offside.
Nigeria’s next game in the Summer Series comes up on Sunday, June 13 against Portugal who were holding hosts USA 0-0 at half time as at the time of this report.
Nigeria’s lineup vs Jamaica
1-Tochukwu Oluehi 4-Glory Ogbonna (19-Akudo Ogbonna, 84), 10-Rita Chikwelu, 18-Vivian Obianujuwan Ikechukwu (13-Ifeoma Onumonu, 55), 20-Blessing Demehin (22-Michelle Alozie, 65), 15-Rasheedat Ajibade, 14-Chidinma Okeke (8-Nicole Payne, 90), 17-Francisca Ordega (Capt.) (7-Ebinemiere Bokiri, 80), 9-Toni Payne, 3-Salome Zogg, 12-Roosa Ariyo (5-Ijeoma Okonronkwo, 43)
16-Yewande Balogun, 23-Sunday Etim, 2-Gift Monday, 6-Charity Adule, 11-Amanda Mbadi, 21-Onyinechi Ibe