Duro Ikhazuagbe with agency report
Super Falcons Head Coach, Randy Waldrum, wants to continue on the Nigerian job after his wards crashed out against England in the Round of 16 of the ongoing FIFA Women’s World Cup in Brisbane, Australia.
The nine-time African champions lost out 4-2 in a nervy penalty shootouts against European champions England after regulation and extra time deadlocked goalless.
Before the Round of 16 clash, Falcons finished in Group D as runners up to co-host Australia on five points. The Nigerian ladies didn’t lose any match despite having massively supported home team Australia, Olympic champions Canada and Republic of Island in that fold.
They matched the European champions toe-to-toe and could have won save for the lottery of penalty kicks.
But shortly after missing setting a record as first coach to take Falcons to the quarterfinals in a 32-team tournament, Waldrum said he was interested in retaining his job as Nigeria’s senior women’s team coach.
“I am proud of my team (Super Falcons),” Waldrum told former BBC sports journalist Osasu Obayuwana @Osasuoon Twitter.
“I want to stay with this team and continue working towards the Olympics (Paris 2024). But that is not a matter for me to decide,” observed the American born coach in apparent reference to his fallout with the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) over his unpaid wages and preparation of the team for the Mundial.
The local sporting media were divided on whether Waldrum’s contract be renewed after the spat with his employers in the public space.
Chloe Kelly scored the decisive spot-kick, following a 0-0 draw over 120 nerve-jangling minutes. Desire Oparanozie and Michelle Alozie missed their kicks for Nigeria.
Beth England, Rachel Daly and Alex Greenwood also converted for the European champions, who had a player sent off in regulation time.
England played with 10 women through extra time after forward Lauren James, their top scorer with three goals in the group stage, was sent off in the 87th minute for an ill-tempered stamp on the back of Alozie after the two went down in a tangled heap.
Fourth-ranked England face either Jamaica or Colombia in the quarter-finals in Sydney on Saturday.