Mali women coach Oumar Guindo has hailed the Super Falcons for their doggedness after his side suffered an embarrassing 6-0 defeat to Florence Omagbemi’s side at the 2016 Africa Women Cup of Nations Cup (AWCON) in Limbe, Cameroun on Sunday evening.
Arsenal Ladies forward Asisat Oshoala scored four goals and assisted one while Francisca Ordega and Uchechi Sunday were among the goal scorers as the reigning AWCON champions began their defence in style.
Guindo stated that the result of the game was not surprising as the Nigerian side are rated as one of the best teams in the continent with an astonishing seven-time African Champions.
“To play a team like Nigeria in the first match at a tournament of this nature is always going to be difficult,” he said during his post match press conference.
“We met a strong team and it was not easy for us. We are a young team and my players have yet to adapt.
“For six years, Mali failed to qualify for the final tournament of the Women’s AFCON until this year.”
The Super Falcons dominated the match from start to finish and were rewarded for their persistence. Ordega got the opener on the 21st minute while striker Oshoala doubled their advantage just before half time.
Sunday registered her name on the score-sheet from the penalty spot after Oshoala was brought down, before the Arsenal forward netted three more goals at the 64th, 69th and 78th minute to hand the Malians a heavy defeat.
Despite the defeat, the Malian coach said his it is too early to write his side off on qualifying from Group B.
“There are still two matches to play,” he continued, adding that “our objective remains going past the group stage and we will work towards achieving that.
“We are a young team and are hoping that in the near future we will be at the level of a team from Nigeria.”
Nigeria will face Ghana on November 23 in the second group match.
A win for the Falcons against Ghana on November 23 will guarantee them a spot in the semi-finals. Ghana earlier defeated Kenya 3-1 in the first group game played on Sunday.