By Rachael Ugiagbe
Namibia’s U-17 Women National team are positive ahead of the return leg qualifier against Nigeria in the race for the 2016 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup in Jordan.
Both teams will square off on Friday, January 22 at the Sam Nujoma Stadium, as the Baby Gladiators will try to overturn the huge 4-0 defeat they suffered in the first leg a forthnight ago at the Abuja National Stadium.
According to coach Mervin Mbakera, the players are battle-ready, to pick up from where they left off after giving an outstanding display in the second half of the first leg.
“We are ready to pick up where we left off and it was unfortunate that we made too many individual mistakes that cost us goals,” he said with regard to the 4-0 first-leg score line.
“We saw the strength of Nigeria and having played against the Brave Gladiators (Namibia’s senior national team), we have an idea how to take on the Flamingoes. I have to commend Jacqui Shipanga for the way she fielded the Gladiators because that is the way the Nigerians are likely to play,” he added.
However coach Mbakera is not worried about the final result, whether Namibia beat Nigeria by the same scoreline or more, because their objective was always clear.
“The objective remains the same and that is to ensure that we do not concede as many goals. We want to put up a spirited performance and it is a pity the score line does not reflect the flow of the game because the Nigerians did not overpower us but only benefited from individual mistakes,” he said.