By Albert Akota
The Head Coach of the U-17 Women National Team, the Flamingoes, Bala Nikyu has declared his team is ready for the FIFA U17 women World Cup which kicks off on Saturday, March 15 in Costa Rica.
After 19-day of intensive training at the Browns Sports football pitch in Faro, Portugal the team departed for Costa Rica yesterday for the tournament that holds from March 15th to April 4th.
Nikyu, who stated this yesterday while making an assessment of the team’s readiness so far ahead of the age-grade competition, expressed delight at the positive response of the players in its World Cup preparatory activities and also stated that there is no injury doubt.
“We thank God that during the preparatory period there hasn’t been any major injury – considering our programme, the girls are really in a good shape, I think by the special grace of God,we are ready.
The Flamingoes gaffer noted that the players are under no pressure to perform and deliver the World Cup title to Nigeria come April 5th.
“There is nothing like pressure, you must have watched the attitude of the players, they have been very free and lively, the coaches and officials are very free with themselves, so I think considering the cooperation, the team should get a better outcome,” he assured.
On what the Nigeria U17 women could do to better their campaign in Costa Rica, Nikyu said his ladies are prepared to surpass their previous record at the World Cup this year, he also blamed the country’s exit in last edition on ill-luck.
In comparison with his past experience as the assistant coach of the Super Falcons, the Coach said “ In Super Falcons, you need much maturity to succeed and the players know what is expected of them, but for the Flamingoes, the case will not be much different, despite the fact that we lost out due to ill-luck in the last edition, after playing beautifully well.
In his assurance to Nigerians that the Flamingoes will do well at the World Cup, he said: “We can assure Nigerians that we are prepared, the team spirit is high and are ready for the World Cup; we are ready to play as the team’s spirit is good. The only thing we ask for is God’s luck to succeed in Costa Rica.”
Flamingoes will depart on Wednesday from Lisbon, Portugal for their FIFA U17 women World Cup campaign in Costa Rica which kicks off on Saturday, March 15.
The Nigeria’s U17 women will take on China in the opening group D clash of the World cadet championship in Costa Rica on Sunday.