Super Falcons forward Rasheedat Ajibade asserted ahead of their blockbuster tie against England, that they have a huge desire to write their names in history. The Atletico Madrid forward predicted Nigeria to edge Enflabd by 2-1 in tomorrow’s tie, saying it’s their time.
Nigeria secured the last 16 berth after an outstanding performance in the group stage. They are billed to face the Three Lioness of England tomorrow for a last eight spot.
Ajibade has refused to pay listening ears to those suggesting that the Falcons will be outclassed by England, that the ranking gap from the fourth-placed European champions to the Super Falcons down at 40 will be too much for her nation to overcome.
Rather, Rasheedat speaks with confidence on Nigeria’s hope:
“We’ve seen a lot of surprises in this World Cup, it’s not about the name, it’s not about the players, it’s not about all of those things.
“Honestly, I respect every player on the England team but we have a lot of quality on our team and a lot of talent that poses threats. I’m focussed on what we can do as a team and not what England want to do and at the end of the day it boils down to what we will do on the field.”
When asked about the full time score too:
“Nigeria two, England one.”
“It’s my second time qualifying from the group so it’s not new and it’s all about doing something new this time.
“I have a feeling it’s our time and we will make history. We’ve qualified for the Round of 16 in the past so that’s not history.
“Now we have to do something new and historical and we want to write our names in history, we have individual goals and collective goals and want to make sure we do something different so that we can lay a standard for those that are coming behind.”
“We’re playing for passion, we’re playing for the young kids out there, playing for our friends and families.
“Any time I have the opportunity to be called to the national team it’s a privilege for me and an honour that I would never take for granted. Playing on the biggest stage of football is a dream come true for me because there are a lot of talented young Nigerian players that could be on the squad and amidst millions of football players, I was one of those that were called up.
“Everything I’ve been training for and working for, this is it. The sleepless nights, the hard work, the injuries, the mental part that I’ve been working on, this is what I’ve been doing it for.”
“I don’t care who scores the goal! It’s not about individual goals for me, I might score a goal and we might not win so I just want to make it to the quarter-final….unless you say I can score the winning goal!”
Rasheedat made her return to the squad against Australia and also featured in Falcon’s barren draw to Ireland having been suspended in the first group game against Canada