A former member of the Super Falcons, Rita Nwadike, has called for the establishment of football academies to help develop women’s football in the country.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Nwadike, a midfielder, scored Nigeria’s first-ever FIFA Women’s World Cup goal against Canada in the 1995 tournament in Sweden.
Rita stated this in an interview with NAN on Wednesday in Lagos, following the performance of the Super Falcons at the ongoing Women’s FIFA World Cup in Australia and Canada.
She said there was a need for synergy between the government, the private sector, and well-meaning individuals for sponsorship and partnership.
“We need to take more positive steps. There’s no argument about the availability of talent. We have an abundance of talents, but we need to put in structures such as football academies.
”We need to build academies that have school facilities so that these girls can play and also go to school. The two should go together to encourage parents to enrol their children.
”As parents, we know the importance of education, and there’s life after football, so once we are able to ensure that these girls understand the plan, they will be focused,” she said.
Rita, a former Rivers Angels Football Club player, said sponsorship plays a vital role in women’s football development.
On the Super Falcons’ match against England, she said they gave their best as the result could have gone either way.
“These are players we can bank on. We need more sponsors to come and partner with the handlers of the team,” she said.
The Super Falcons of Nigeria bowed out of the ongoing Women’s World Cup after losing 4-2 on penalties to the Lionesses of England after a 0-0 draw.
NAN reports that Rits also played for the Nigeria women’s national football team at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece.
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