African champions Super Falcons in the early hours of Thursday suffered a 2-0 defeat to world’s top-ranked nation and current world champions United States in their last game of the USA Summer Series at the 20,500 capacity Q2 Stadium in Austin, USA.
The victory means the United States female team have gone unbeaten in 42 games with Christen Press and Lynn Williamss scoring both goals for USA in either halves.
The game was the sixth meeting between both sides with the African champions starting on a promising note as wing back Michelle Alozie cleared the ball off the feet of Megan Rapinoe in the fifth minute.
Goalkeeper Tochukwu Oluehi moments later bravely booted away the ball with Rapinoe bearing down on goal after Alozie was caught off guard.
The Falcons got the first corner kick of the match but the strikes from the duo of Rasheedat Ajibade and Ijeoma Okoronkwo at the edge of the Americans’ penalty area were repealed by the USA defenders who put their bodies on the firing line.
Oluehi superbly gathered a long range shot from Samantha Mewis in the 21st minute.
The Falcons number 1 heaved a sigh of relief to see the USA ‘goal’ in the 33rd minute ruled out for offside as the ball deflected off the head of Megan Rapinoe who was in an offside position.
Afterwards Asisat Oshoala shrugged off the challenge of her marker to deliver a cross into the USA vital area but Toni Payne who received the ball at the edge of the box fired wide.
The Nigeria side were handed a chance to score with five minutes left on the clock in the first half from close range but a well rehearsed free-kick in the end was too tame and easily saved by goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher in goal for the Amercians.
Early in the second half the duo of Oshoala and Ajibade combined well in their search for an equaliser but the latter was hesitant in letting fly a shot and the ball was cleared by the USA defenders.
With five minutes played into the second half, USA’s Abby Dahlkemper stooped low for a diving header but misjudged the flight of the ball which Chidinma Okeke cleared.
Nigeria goalkeeper Oluehi produced the save of the match when she brilliantly parried away a fantastic strike from Christen Press as she was teed up by Rapinoe.
Oluehi was however unlucky to be let down by her defenders as the USA side doubled their lead towards the end of the game.
Lind Williams profited from a diagonal cross on the right side of the USA attack and outwitted an onrushing Oluehi with two Nigerian defenders who were caught out of position desperately dashing back to clear the ball.