Nigeria’s U17 girls host their Cameroonian counterpart in Benin City on Saturday in the first leg, final round of the African qualifiers for this year’s FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup finals.

The Flamingos reached the final round of the African series by overcoming Ethiopia’s U17 girls on the away goal rule, both teams battling to a scoreless draw in Benin City after a 1-1 draw in Addis Ababa.

Coach Bala Nikyu is full of confidence his side will beat their opponent on Saturday, for an easier return leg.

“We know for certain that it will be dangerous to take matters lightly with the Cameroonians. Apart from the rivalry between Nigeria and Cameroon on the football field, the Cameroonian girls sent strong signals with their performance against the Algerians.

“However, we have prepared very well for them and victory is what we will go all out for on Saturday.”

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The Baby Lionesses arrived in Lagos on Wednesday, and were flown to Benin City on Thursday evening aboard an Air Peace flight. They are staying at the Best Western Hotel in the Edo State capital.

The match officials from Benin Republic are also settled in Benin City. Christelle Ligan Aurore is the centre referee, with compatriots Nafissatou Yekini Shitou (Assistant Referee 1), Sonia Louis (Assistant Referee 2) and Beatrice Goughoedou Zongbossi (Fourth Official) also involved. Aisha Nalule from Uganda is the match commissioner.

The return leg will take place in Yaounde in a fortnight, with the winner on aggregate to pick one of Africa’s tickets to the 6th FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup taking place in Uruguay later this year.

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