Super Falcons and Barcelona Femeni star Asisat Oshoala, is widely regarded as one of the greatest African footballers of her generation.
Oshoala breaks silence after Super Falcons WAFCON disappointment
Super Falcons star Asisat Oshoala has spoken out for the first time since Nigeria's heartbreak at the 2022 WAFCON.
The 28-year-old striker who recently won the best African women's player at the CAF Awards earlier this year did feature for Nigerian at the Women's Africa Cup of Nations tournament in Morocco last month.
However, the Lagos-born forward struggled with an injury that forced her to retire from the competition, just when the Super Falcons had qualified for the semi-finals.
Nigeria ended up narrowly losing to Morocco via a penalty shoot-out after a fierce 120 minutes of action.
Oshoala whose absence was sorely missed was to some extent criticized by fans of the National team on social media prior to her injury before the semis.
Oshoala beaming with optimism about the Super Falcon's chances at the 2023 Women's World Cup
The FC Barcelona star has now spoken out since Nigeria's exit from the WAFCON tournament last month, as well as the Super Falcon's chances of achieving greatness at the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup in Australia.
“For the national team, the 2023 World Cup is the next big tournament for us. Obviously, I couldn’t participate in the [latter stages of] WAFCON, because I’m currently injured, but I’m really looking forward to it to be honest." Oshoala was quoted to have said in an interview with FIFA+.
The Nigerian striker also admitted her anticipation for the global showpiece next year, for which would be her third World Cup, in her illustrious career.
“I really want to be out there; I want to see the atmosphere at the World Cup. It’s always beautiful to be there, as it’s a global tournament, and every player wants to participate in that,” she said.
The Super Falcons of Nigeria will also be joined by South Africa, Morocco, and Zambia in Australia next year, with Senegal and Cameroon, potentially joining them if they can navigate the inter-confederation play-offs next year.
Oshoala tips African teams for success at the 2023 Women's World Cup
Oshoala also believes that every African nation going to the tournament stands a chance of winning the tournament, citing the unpredictable nature of the sport as a huge factor as well.
“Results are decided on the pitch and we’ve got good teams coming from Africa, [potentially] six countries. Who says we can't win it? Everyone expected Nigeria to win the WAFCON, but we were beaten and had to contest the match for third place. Football is a game of luck sometimes.” Oshoala said to FIFA+.
Eight years ago, Oshoala led Nigeria to the final of the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in Canada against the then two-time world champions, Germany.
Lena Petermann’s extra-time goal was what stopped Nigeria from becoming U-20 World champions that year.
Fast forward to a few years later, the five-time African Women's footballer of the year now boasts three continental titles to her name with the Super Falcons, as well as a host of individual accolades and team honors at club level.
Oshoala is now beaming with confidence ahead of the World Cup next year as nine-time African champions, Super Falcons of Nigeria, seek to make a point on the global stage in Australia.