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Meet Ashleigh Plumptre, the ‘Oyinbo’ member of Nigeria Super Falcons [Video]





Ashleigh Plumptre, 23 year-old Leicester city player made her debut for Nigeria’s Super Falcons on Friday, along with Ifeoma Onumonu.

The two players gave a good account of themselves as the Falcons beat the Lady Elephants of Ivory Coast 2-0.

Debutant Onumonu banged in the two goals and Plumptre was rock-solid in defence. She bagged the assist in Onumonu’s second goal.

Plumptre was trending on Nigerian Twitter on Saturday as people wanted to know more about the beautiful player.

Well, she is British-Nigerian, daughter of a Nigerian Dad and a British mom.

In an interview with NFF TV, she speaks proudly about her Nigerian heritage.

Match Report:

Nigeria’s Super Falcons on Friday defeated the Lady Elephants of Cote D’Ivoire 2-0, with debutant Ifeoma Onumonu scoring twice to give her team a good head start in the pairing.

The win was in the first leg match of their final round fixture in the 2022 Africa Women’s Cup of Nations (AWCON) qualifiers.


In the match played at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium in Abuja, Nigeria’s persistence saw them opening scoring in the 21st minute.


Ashleigh Plumptre in Nigeria’s Super Falcons and Leicester colours

That was when Esther Okoronkwo set up Onumonu inside the penalty box to fire the Super Falcons in front from close range.

Seven minutes later, Falcons goalkeeper Chiamaka Nnadozie was put to the test when Zote Nina sent a shot towards goal but she was quick to save it.

The Ivorians began to pile huge pressure from the commencement of the second half, in a bid to get an equaliser but the Falcons stood determined to extend the lead.

Team head coach Randy Waldrum sent in striker Uchenna Kanu for midfielder Amanda Mbadinuji in the 55th minute to bolster their play.

A minute later, the U.S-based Onumonu, who was making her debut national team appearance, latched on to another debutant’s floated pass.

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Ashleigh Plumtree repulsed an Ivorian attack to float the ball from the left side to the right, and Onumonu only needed to lob over Ivorian goalkeeper Cynthia Djohore.

Falcons tried to register a more resounding victory with striker Gift Monday coming in for Okoronkwo in the 84th minute but Cote D’Ivoire put up a solid defence.

The visitors looked to score a consolation goal thereafter, but France-based Nnadozie made impressive saves just as defender Plumtree ensured the hosts maintained a clean sheet.

After the match, coach Waldrum said he was happy with the team’s performance.

“I thought that we had a good control of the game, so I am really proud of the players.

“We have Nnadozie, making a huge save at the end, keeping a clean sheet and we all know that it’s very important.

“We are also proud of this lady (Onumonu). This is her first opportunity to come to Nigeria and represent her country and she scored a brace.

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“Ashleigh also gave a good account of herself and it was really a solid performance,” Waldrum said.

The coach also added that he was positive ahead of the return leg in Abidjan on Wednesday.

For Onumonu, she was excited to be making her debut, adding that she had always desired to play for the country.

“It’s an honour to play for this team, I have been watching them for years and I dreamt about playing for the Super Falcons and am excited to have scored a brace.

“I really just want to make impact in this team,” Onumonu added.

Winners of the fixture will qualify for the 2022 AWCON in Morocco in June.

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AFCON23 qualifier: Guinea Bissau’s Wild Dogs devour Nigeria’s Super Eagles





Guinea Bissau stunned Nigeria 0-1 in a Group A 2023 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium in Abuja on Friday.

A 26th-minute goal was all the visitors needed to shock the 2013 AFCON winners on home soil and hand them a famous victory. That was Guinea Bissau’s first-ever win against the Super Eagles. The first time both sides met was at the 2021 AFCON as Nigeria defeated them 2-0 in a group stage game.

Heading into Friday’s match, Nigeria was brimming with confidence having Serie A topscorer Victor Osimhen and Atalanta’s Lookman Ademola in their ranks.

Before the clash, the Napoli forward admitted that the team won’t underrate the Wild Dogs but assured of victory.

Expectedly, the 1994 AFCON winners began the game on a good note with Villareal’s Samuel Chukwueze threatening the visitors.

Osimhen had the chance to give Nigeria the lead but the Guinea Bissau goalkeeper Jonas Mendes denied him.

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Despite the Eagles’ early dominance, the Djurtus managed to hold and steadily grew into the game, causing a scare for the defensive partnership of Kevin Akpogoma and Cavin Bassey.

They finally got the breakthrough four minutes away from the half-hour mark as an inviting long ball split the Super Eagles’ defence and fell to a chasing Mama Samba Balde.

He wasted no time in dispatching the ball through Francis Uzoho’s leg as his side raced to a lead.

Barring a side netting, Guinea Bissau almost doubled the margin after a swift counterattack a few minutes later.

Nigeria’s coach Jose Peseiro threw Paul Onuachu and Moses Simon into the game – subbing Lookman and Kelechi Iheanacho – as hostilities started for the second half.

Wilfred Ndidi’s weak effort, and Moses’ wide shots – all coming in the latter stages of the encounter – were all products of the team’s waves of attack.

But the Djurtus held on to claim a famous victory over Nigeria, a win that catapulted them to the summit of the group with seven points from three games.


Nigeria will be aiming to make amends in the second leg of the encounter at the Estadio 24 de Setembro in Bissau on Monday.


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PDP takes Zamfara from APC as Dauda Lawal unseats Matawalle





The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has announced Dauda Lawal of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, as the governor-elect of Zamfara State.

Lawal was announced as the winner in Gusau, the state capital, in the early hours of Tuesday.

According to INEC, he polled a total of 377,726 votes to defeat Bello Matawalle of the All Progressives Congress, APC, who scored 311,976.

The declaration came amidst some mild drama over the presentation of the results for Maradun Local Government Area, LGA.

Recall that the Collation officer for Maradun Local Government Area, LGA, Ahmed Kainuwa, was said to have been abudcted on Monday.

However, Kainuwa later resurfaced at state collation centre at the INEC headquarters in Gusau.

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Bukayo Saka dominates as Arsenal take eight-point lead in title race





Bukayo Saka scored twice and provided an assist in a brilliant performance to help Mikel Arteta’s side extend their lead over Manchester City at the top of the Premier League.

The Gunners were clinical in the final third, with Gabriel Martinelli firing them in front before Bukayo Saka found space in the box to stroke in a second before half-time. Palace hit the post through Wilfried Zaha and threatened on the break, but their miserable run continued, with the decision to sack Patrick Vieira not paying immediate dividends.

Granit Xhaka made it 3-0 with a scruffy finish from Leandro Trossard’s incisive through ball to put Arsenal in complete control. Palace midfielder Jeffrey Schlupp did at least score their first Premier League goal for a month by smashing in a loose ball from a corner, but Saka lashed in Kieran Tierney’s cutback to make it 4-1 soon after.

Palace are just three points above the relegation zone despite being in 12th place. By contrast, Mikel Arteta’s side have now notched up 69 points to reach their same points tally as last season in 10 games fewer. Here are the talking points from the match at the Emirates Stadium.

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Martinelli has become a figurehead for Arsenal in recent weeks. With Gabriel Jesus and Eddie Nketiah both sidelined, the Brazilian has stepped up to the plate to provide goals with regularity.

Still only 21 years old, Martinelli is now established as a top-class Premier League striker, with his goal here taking him onto 13 for the season – only Erling Haaland (28), Harry Kane (21), Ivan Toney (16) and Marcus Rashford (14) have more.

Despite the huge burden of starting week-in, week-out, Martinelli still looks razor sharp inside the box. His finish showed just how dangerous he can be, with a good first touch, a quick change of direction and a devastating finish undoing Palace.

Like Martinelli, Saka is still only 21 years old, but his talent – and importance to Arsenal – belies his youth. He was absolutely electric against Palace, providing the cross for Martinelli’s goal, making it 2-0 with an assured finish from Ben White ’s cute pass and adding gloss with a second goal from Tierney’s pass.

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Saka’s consistency is such that he now has 12 goals and 10 assists in the Premier League this season and has reached double figures for both statistics for the first time in the same season. The achievement is underlined by the fact that he’s the first Arsenal player to do so in a Premier League season since Alexis Sánchez in 2016/17.

Only Haaland (33) and Kane (23) have more Premier League goal involvements than Saka (22) in the Premier League this season. Meanwhile, only Lionel Messi (13), Kevin de Bruyne (12), Neymar (11) and Randal Kolo Muani (10) have more league assists in Europe’s top five leagues. His 12 league goals means he has overtaken his tally for last season, despite playing 10 games fewer, directly matching his team’s upward curve.

William Saliba had played every minute of Arsenal’s Premier League season before Sunday. The Frenchman’s injury in the Europa League defeat by Sporting on Thursday came as a major blow to the Gunners.

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Rob Holding came on for Saliba earlier in the week and he took his place against Palace, lining up alongside Gabriel Magalhaes to form a fresh centre-back partnership. The unfamiliar sight made some Arsenal fans uneasy – and there were some worrying signs early on.

Holding was guilty of diving in unsuccessfully to try and win the ball early on, with Zaha then hitting the post after cutting inside White. The 27-year-old was afforded a lot of time on ball by Palace and looked assured with it.

As Palace’s threat faded, Holding became more comfortable and passed his audition as Saliba’s stand-in. Jakub Kiwior was brought on to make his Premier League table and make an immediate impression with a strong challenge when left one-on-one with Zaha, so there is pressure on Holding’s place.

Palace are in the worst form of any side in the Premier League. Their position of 12th in the league table does not nearly tell the whole story: they are in danger of being relegated this season.

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