Super Falcon’s captain Onome Ebi, is set to participate in her sixth Women’s World Cup at the Australia & New Zealand 2023 Women’s World Cup.
Ebi, who is 40 years old and has won the African championship four times, shared her secrets to maintaining her longevity with FIFA and expressed her ambitions for the upcoming tournament in July.
Nigeria has qualified for the FIFA Women’s World Cup nine times, and Ebi has played in five of them. When asked what motivates her to continue playing at the age of 40, Ebi said it’s her passion for the sport.
In the upcoming tournament, the Super Falcons will compete against Australia, the Republic of Ireland, and Canada in Group B. When discussing Nigeria’s objectives for the tournament, the captain said, “As a team, we want to do better than we did at the 2019 World Cup in France (where Nigeria were defeated by Germany in the last 16). Being totally honest, I think we can aim for the semi-finals. We’ve got high-quality, experienced players and some really talented youngsters.
“It really is doable, and it’s up to us to grab the chance with both hands and show the world that we are Nigeria and that we’re not just there to make up the numbers. I’m ready for a sixth World Cup, and we’re ready as a team.”
Ebi’s leadership in the Super Falcons’ defence could lead to the team surpassing the accomplishments of Nigeria’s 1999 Women’s World Cup squad, which reached the quarterfinals and was the first African team to do so.
The 2023 Women’s World Cup group stage will consist of 32 teams, which will be reduced to 16 teams after the group stage. The co-hosts will participate in the first two games of the tournament, with New Zealand playing against Norway and Australia facing off against Ireland.
Over a 15-day period, there will be two to four games each day, with varying kickoff times depending on the location. In the event of a tie, the first tiebreaker will be goal difference, followed by goals scored, head-to-head results, goal difference between the tied teams, total goals between the tied teams, and finally, drawing of lots.
Group A: New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Switzerland
Group B: Australia, Republic of Ireland, Nigeria, Canada
Group C: Spain, Costa Rica, Zambia, Japan
Group D: England, Haiti, Denmark, China
Group E: United States, Vietnam, Netherlands, Portugal
Group F: Panama, France, Jamaica, Brazil
Group G: Sweden, South Africa, Italy, Argentina
Group H: Germany, Morocco, Colombia, South Korea