The game between the super falcons of Nigeria and the Atlas Lionesses of Morrocco has sparked a lot of reaction. It evoked an unusual atmosphere of believe and encouragement in the history on sportsmanship.
The Super Falcons were heartbroken after two players were dismissed and they lost the championship to the Atlas Lionesses in Rabat.
Despite losing 5-4 on penalties to hosts Morocco in the Women’s Africa Cup of Nations semifinals on Monday following a 1-1 draw in regulation and extra time, Nigeria’s Super Falcons fans from all over Africa and the world have come together to applaud the team.
At the Complexe Sportif Prince Moulay-Abdellah in Rabat, the Super Falcons’ adventure came to an end when attacker Ifeoma Onumonu missed the game-winning kick after Atlas Lionesses goalkeeper Khadujah Er-Rmichi made the perfect judgment call to stop her attempt.
After Rasheedat Ajibade and Halimatu Ayinde were sent off in the 48th and 70th minutes of the exhilarating game, respectively, Nigeria played the final 30 minutes of the match with just nine players.
Social media users have praised Nigeria’s valiant effort, claiming that the Super Falcons “were cheated by the referee” and deserved to advance to the final.
While responding to a post on the GOAL Africa Facebook page, Evakeys Denis Yaah stated: “Morocco won but Nigeria won our heart,” while Ayomide Ojo stated: “The girls gave it their all,” adding: “If this Moroccan squad were any good, they should have won playing against nine for 50 minutes.”
He says that the Super Falcons are the best team in African women’s football, final or no final.
Another person said that It was a fantastic run from the Super Falcons and that they are the best in Africa, magnificent, massive, passionate, and all of these things.
Nigeria strived despite all odds and succeeded in getting there, holding on with two players down is unusual to witness.
Some people even compared the super falcons to the Super Eagles, their men’s team. A Facebook user called Ayobams said that Nigeria was down to nine ladies, and in reality, these Nigerian females should be known as the Super Eagles, and the men as the Falcons.
He said that the reasoning behind his concept, was because if the Super Eagles are down to 10 guys, they start giving up.
Another group of supporters afterwards attributed Nigeria’s loss on poor refereeing and “biasness” on the part of the African confederation CAF towards the host country.
The positive reaction especially from Nigerian fans was a breath of fresh air, considering the fact that even the Super Falcons probably didn’t expect it.