Nigeria failed to progress beyond the group stages of the 2016 Papua New Guinea FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup because they were not prepared for the competition, says former Nigeria international, Stella Mbachu.
Although the Falconets beat Spain 2-1 in their last group match on Sunday, they exited the competition after finishing third in Group B with six points. Japan and Spain qualified for the quarterfinals.
Mbachu told our correspondent that the Falconets found it difficult to adjust to the competition, which resulted in their losing their first match 6-0 to Japan.
“The team have talented players, but they didn’t have the preparations befitting a competition of that magnitude,” she said.
“Their preparations were not even befitting for an African championship not to talk of the World Cup. The first loss against Japan affected them – it was too heavy. They didn’t play good friendly matches outside the country.
“The team that finished second in the 2014 tournament in Canada had better preparations for the World Cup than the current team.
“Their coach, Peter Dedevbo, is good because it takes a good coach to motivate the team to fight back in their next two matches and it also takes the players’ good form to do well in the matches.”