Wednesday Oct 28, 2020. 14:00
Super Falcons forward Francisca Ordega has given her seal of approval to the appointment of Randy Waldrum as the new coach of Nigeria’s national women’s team.
Following the departure of former coach Thomas Dennerby in September 2019, Nigeria had gone more than a year without a permanent replacement.
But early this month the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) appointed Waldrum – who has previously coached Trinidad & Tobago as well as the United States U-23 women’s teams – as the new boss of the Super Falcons.
“I am happy, very happy. It is not a good thing for a team to stay without a coach for a year,” Ordega, who plays her club football in China, told ESPN.
“It has been a really long time for us. It’s not a good thing for a senior team to be without a coach for a whole year. It’s not proper at all.”
Ordega has previously competed against a Waldrum team during her time in American football: “I played against him several times. Playing against this team was always tough for us. So I really think he is a good choice for [Nigeria].
“It wasn’t really easy for them to beat us even though he is a good coach because if you don’t have the kind of players you want or expect, it is hard for you to beat the bigger or better team and we had better players.”
She continued, “You know, America has one of the best teams in the world in terms of women’s football. The reason is that they take your weaknesses and they work on it to make you improve.
“For example, when I first went there, I did not have stamina, but they saw that as my weakness and worked on me and my stamina improved.
“Their professionalism is on a different level. I think he’s going to bring that. The way Americans think is quite different from the way we think, in terms of football, they’re very smart, they take decisions fast.”
Waldrum’s immediate goals will be to lead the Super Falcons to a successful defence of their Africa Women’s Cup of Nations title in 2022, as well as qualification for the 2023 Women’s World Cup.