With the group stage matches of the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup concluded on Thursday, the Super Falcons of Nigeria, Banyana Banyana of South Africa, and the Atlas Lionesses of Morocco gave Africa a historic three-placement in the next stage of the tournament.
This is the first time in history that three African countries have made it to the last 16 of any FIFA World Cup competition at the same time.
The PUNCH reported on Monday that the Super Falcons played a nail-biting goalless draw against the Republic of Ireland to advance to the knockout stage. Nigeria prior to that, defeated co-hosts Australia 3-2 in a thrilling encounter after playing out a goalless draw against the much fancied Olympic champions, Canada, to qualify for the round of 16, finishing second in the Group B table, ending the group stage undefeated.
After losing 6-0 to Germany on July 24, Morocco fought back on Sunday with a 1-0 win against South Korea. In a thrilling game on Thursday, the Atlas Lionesses defeated Colombia 1-0 to book a slot in the round of 16, finishing second in Group H.
African champions, the Banyana Banyana of South Africa, started their campaign with a 2-1 loss against their more illustrious opponents Sweden but bounced back holding Argentina in a 2-2 draw. The relentless team fought hard to secure a 3-2 win over Italy on Wednesday. South Africa finished second in Group G.
Subsequently, after England beat China 6-1 on Tuesday, it was confirmed that Nigeria would face the Lionesses in what promises to be an exciting encounter in the round of 16 on Monday.
Here are the fixtures of the teams that will be playing in the last 16;
Switzerland vs Spain (Saturday, August 5)
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Netherlands vs South Africa (Sunday, August 6)
Japan vs Norway (Saturday, August 5)
Sweden vs USA (Sunday, August 6)
Australia vs Denmark (Monday, August 7)
France vs Morocco (Tuesday, August 8)
England vs Nigeria (Monday, August 7)
Columbia vs Jamaica (Tuesday, August 8) ,
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