Chiamaka Nnadozie, the goalkeeper for the Super Falcons, is driven to earn a spot at the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris as Nigeria prepares for a pivotal match against their archrivals, South Africa.

Despite the fact that South Africa has recently emerged victorious in severalconflicts, the two countries have developed a fierce rivalry over the years and are regarded as the talk of Africa after victories on the continent.

In their most recent encounters, which took place in their home country of Mauritius in the Aisha Buhari Cup of 2021 and the 2022 Women’s Afcon in Morocco, Banyana defeated Nigeria.

For Nnadozie, qualifying for the Olympic Games in France are of very particular importance.

“I read so many things about the Olympics. We didn’t manage to qualify in 2020, I felt bad at first, then I said to myself ‘Come on, you have time ahead of you’ and that’s it, another great opportunity to qualify,” she said.

“I want to know what it feels like to participate in the Olympic Games.”

The Nigerian goalkeeper, who plays for top-tier club Paris FC, has been a resident of the City of Lights for four years since 2020. Nnadozie has fallen in love with this city and wants to represent her country at the Olympics, which will be held in her second home.

France holds further importance to Nnadozie asides being the home of her club side as it was in France that the shot-stopper burst onto the international scene on June 17, 2019. It was on that day, that the Super Falcons travelled to Rennes, in the west of France where she made her debut thanks to coach Thomas Dennerby.

The Olu native held her own against the Bleues before the unfortunate 79th minute penalty she conceded. The Nigerians lost by the narrowest of margins, however Nnadozie laid the perfect foundation for a stellar career and has since built a reputation as a penalty saver.

Nnadozie arrived in Paris in February 2020 and hardly had time to settle in as she hit the ground running and was nominated twice in the category of best goalkeeper of the UNFP (prize rewarding players playing in the French championship).

“She is one of the best goalkeepers of her generation” said Sandrine Soubeyrand, her coach at Paris FC.

Few years later, Nigerian goalkeeper was awarded the Best Women’s Goalkeeper in Africa at the CAF Awards in 2023.

Encouraged by this honor and her success in the most recent FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia & New Zealand 2023, where she wore the captain’s armband and guided Nigeria to the round of 16, Nnadozie is excited to take her team to the Olympics.

Nnadozie and Nigeria will need to defeat South Africa, the current African champions, in a two-leg match on April 5 and 9 in order to accomplish this.

The Super Falcons’ Toby Oluechi served as Nigeria’s shot stopper during their 2008 Olympic participation.

“I like Oluechi’s style of speaking with us, her advice, and her insistence on emphasizing the significance of qualifying for the Games.” She says it is an amazing tournament. I want to be qualified even more after hearing all of her stories.” Nnadozie continued.

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