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Olympics qualifier against Nigeria do-or-die, says South Africa coach

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Desire Ellis, coach of South Africa’s senior women’s national football team, Banyana Banyana, has warned the Super Falcons of Nigeria that it will be ‘do or die’ in the final round for the women’s football event of the 2024 Olympics in April.

South Africa and Nigeria, who both failed to qualify for the women’s football event at the last edition of the Olympics in Tokyo, Japan will clash for a place at this summer’s Games in Paris after they both came through their respective third-round qualifiers.

The reigning African champions saw off Tanzania 4-0 on aggregate to stay in the race for one of two African slots in the women’s football event at the Olympics, while Nigeria needed a 15th-minute Esther Okoronkwo winner in the second leg to edge Cameroon in a turgid 180-minute battle over two legs.

“It will be do-or-die (vs Nigeria),” Ellis said after her side’s win over Tanzania.

“We know the game against Nigeria will not be easy, but we have shown that we can play the best. Having our best players back will also help a lot, because when it comes to those tough matches you need players with experience, and you need to get mix right with the youth and experience.

“Hopefully we can get that right and get the positive results first away from home again,” she added.

The CAF Women’s Coach of The Year added that her team would plan for an early training camp to give them a bigger chance against the nine-time African champions.

Nigeria’s Assisat Oshoala

“We want to have an early camp, we will improve our chances when we prepare early and very well,” she said.

See also  Nigeria ranks eighth in happiest African countries

The first leg of the final playoffs is billed for April 1 at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium in Abuja with the return leg in South Africa eight days later with the overall winners qualifying for the Olympics.

The Paris 2024 Olympics will hold between July 26 and August 11, 2024.


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