Women's World Cup - Group B

Women’s World Cup 2023: Everything you need to know about Nigeria


Nigeria World Cup 2023 fixtures, betting odds and statistics

You can read all about Canada, Australia and Republic of Ireland by clicking on their names here.

How did Nigeria qualify?

Nigeria qualified via the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations. They finished second in their group, below South Africa but above Botswana and Burundi, beat Cameroon in the quarter-finals before a shock semi-final defeat to Morocco on penalties. Nevertheless, all four semi-finalists qualified for the World Cup.

Nigeria’s major tournament record

World Cup

Best World Cup result: Quarter-finals- 1999.

Africa Cup of Nations

Best Africa Cup of Nations result: Winners- On 11 occasions (most-recently 2018).

Olympic Games

Best Olympics result: Quarter-finals- 2004.

Nigeria at World Cup 2023

Will Nigeria add to their low tally of World Cup wins in Australia?

The Super Falcons are one of just seven countries to have qualified for all nine editions of the women’s World Cup, alongside USA, Sweden, Norway, Germany, Japan and Brazil.

However, they’ve only ever gone beyond the group stages twice, achieving this in 1999 and 2019, before suffering a first knockout round exit on both occasions.

Four years ago, a 2-0 victory over Korea Republic saw them advance as a best-ranked third-place finisher, before suffering a 3-0 drubbing at the hands of Germany in the last 16.

Overall, the Super Falcons have won just four of 26 World Cup matches, losing 19 of them.

In Africa, Nigeria have dominated the women’s international scene, winning 11 of the first 13 Africa Cup of Nations.

However, they were unable to claim a fourth successive WAFCON title last year, ousted on penalties by hosts Morocco at the semi-final stage.

Since then, Randy Waldrum’s side have lost friendlies against the United States and Japan, before wins over Haiti and New Zealand, showing the Super Falcons can be competitive, but remain unable to challenge the elite.

Nigeria’s first two matches are extremely tough, facing Canada and then co-hosts Australia, with their third group game, against Republic of Ireland, by far their most likely chance of a victory.

It would be a huge surprise is the 11-times African champions made it through to the round of 16 tis summer.

Nigeria team news

Randy Waldrum announced his 23-player squad on 16 June, with Ugochi Emenayo, Charity Adule and Anam Imo amongst those cut from the preliminary roster.

Nigeria′s key players: Uchenna Kanu

Will Uchenna Kanu continue to impress in a Nigeria shirt?

To date, Kanu has scored ten times in just 26 appearances for the Super Falcons, including netting in a friendly against USA last, a game her team lost 2-1 in Capital City.

On the club side, after helping Tigres UNAL win the Liga MX Apertura title last year, the 26 year old joined Racing Louisville, making 13 appearances in NWSL so far, netting against the Chicago Red Starts in the Challenge Cup.

Four years ago, Kanu came off the bench in all three of Nigeria’s group games in France, before starting the last 16 defeat to Germany in Grenoble; she’s a certain starter this time.

Nigeria′s key players: Desire Oparanozie

Desire Oparanozie will be hoping to further improve her impressive goal-scoring record at this tournament, having scored 22 times in just 36 appearances for Nigeria so far.

As a 16 year old, she scored three times at the African Women’s Championship back in 2010, including netting in the final victory over Equatorial Guinea.

All of Oparanozie’s international goal had come against African opposition, before bagging the third in a 3-0 friendly victory over New Zealand earlier this year.

The striker captained Nigeria at the most-recent World Cup, starting all four matches, and will lead them out at this tournament too.

In terms of club football, Oparanozie spent eight years in France with Guingamp and then Dijon, before moving to Wǔhàn Jianghan University last year, helping them win the Chinese Super League title.

Nigeria′s key players: Asisat Oshoala

Without doubt, the superstar in this side is striker Asisat Oshoala.

To date, she’s scored a staggering 30 goals in just 27 international caps, two of which have come at World Cups, netting against Sweden in 2015 and South Korea four years later.

At club level meantime, Oshoala won the 2016 FA Cup with Arsenal and then back-to-back Chinese Super League titles with Dàlián Quanjian, before joining Barcelona in 2019.

In four seasons with the Catalan giants, the 28 year old has taken her game to a whole new level, scoring 99 times in 136 appearances for Barça.

This season, Oshoala scored five in the Champions League, helping the Blaugrana claim a second title, although she did not feature in the final after sustaining an injury in the last Liga F match of the season.

Asisat Oshoala is one of the best players at this tournament, across all 32 teams, so, if Nigeria are going to spring a surprise or two, they’ll need her to be at her brilliant best.

Nigeria′s possible starting line-up for World Cup 2023

Nigeria′s full squad for World Cup 2023

Goalkeepers

NameCapsGoalsClub
Chiamaka Nnadozie200Paris FC
Tochukwu Oluehi400Hakkarigücü Spor
Yewande Balogun10Saint-Étienne

Defenders

Onome Ebi992Abia Angels
Osinachi Ohale451Deportivo Alavés
Glory Ogbonna181Beşiktaş
Ashleigh Plumptre110Leicester City
Rofiat Imuran40Stade de Reims
Michelle Alozie181Houston Dash
Oluwatosin Demehin60Stade de Reims

Midfielders

Halimatu Ayinde342Rosengård
Rasheedat Ajibade266Atlético Madrid
Toni Payne201Sevilla
Christy Ucheibe131Benfica
Deborah Abiodun20Rivers Angles
Jennifer Echegini71Florida State Seminoles

Forwards

Asisat Oshoala2629Barcelona Femení
Uchenna Kanu2510Racing Louisville
Gift Monday112Granadilla Tenerife
Ifeoma Onumonu194Gotham FC
Desire Oparanozie3522Wǔhàn Jianghan University
Francisca Ordega307CSKA Moskva
Esther Okoronkwo72Saint-Étienne

FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 Group B table

Ben Gray

Ben Gray

Arsenal fan – follow them over land and sea (and Leicester); sofa Celtic supporter; a bit of a football '"encyclopedia".


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