Desire Oparanozie, the Super Falcons and Wuhan Jianghan Forward, has revealed her regret at missing the last Women African Cup Of Nations (WAFCON) held in Morocco.
Oparanozie, who has been a key player for the Super Falcons, felt bad about missing out on the tournament, especially as the team failed to defend their title and win the tournament for a record tenth time.
“I felt bad, as I was part of the team. The Coach did all he could to make me part of the team, but because of border restrictions in China during the COVID-19 period, it wasn’t possible,” said Oparanozie as quoted by tobex media.
The Super Falcons prolific striker also emphasized that what made it so painful was the premature exit of Barcelona’s Asisat Oshoala from the tournament due to an early injury in the first game against South Africa, which the Super Falcons (the defending champions then) eventually lost.
“The biggest blow was Oshoala getting injured in the first game; that really compounded everything. I felt terribly bad we had a not too decent outing, but most importantly, the girls gave their all, winning against Cameroon for a World Cup slot and playing against the host country, the referees, and the overwhelming crowd with a heartwarming performance despite the loss in the semi-final,” she added.
Despite the disappointment, Oparanozie remains optimistic about the Super Falcons’ future. “Hopefully, the next WAFCON, the Super Falcons will get it right,” she said.
Oparanozie is back with the Super Falcons and was part of the team that recently played preparatory matches ahead of the World Cup in Antalya Turkey. She played a crucial role in the matches, where the Super Falcons won against Haiti and New Zealand, respectively.
In the match against New Zealand, Oparanozie scored the third goal in the 3-0 victory, indicating that she is in top form and ready to contribute to the Super Falcons’ success in the upcoming FIFA World Cup in July.