Pre-World Cup friendly: Nigeria women’s team suffer first ever defeat against Canada

Nigeria senior women’s team wrapped up their training camp in Spain with a 2-1 loss to fellow World Cup-bound side Canada at Pinatar Stadium, Murcia.

The north Americans came from behind to record their first win over the Nigerians in three attempts.

Desire Oparanozie needed only 27 minutes to score the opener, finishing off a counter. The forward sprinted behind centre-backs Kadeisha Buchanan and Shelina Zadorsky to latch onto Uchenna Kanu’s superb through ball. Buchanan got back and threw herself into a sliding tackle, but Oparanozie did well to take a touch around the defender before finding the right bottom corner.

Coach Kenneth Heiner-Møller made three changes at the start of the second half, and it wasn’t long before it paid off. The Nigeria defence failed to clear their lines after Jayde Riviere sent a cross into the box and the ball fell to Janine Beckie, who volleyed in from close range.

Sophie Schmidt then headed in to give the Canadians a 2-1 victory, with Riviere claiming the assist.

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