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Our focus is not only on Banyana, says Oshoala

Barcelona star forward Asisat Oshoala has stated Nigeria’s determination to do all they can to snatch the 2022 Africa Women’s Cup of Nations (AWCON) as they are looking beyond facing title rivals, South Africa.

The tournament will commence in Morocco on the 2nd of July until the 23rd of July 2022.

The Super Falcons will take on Banyana Banyana in their quest for another record-extending 10th continental crown in their opening match of the competition on 4 July at Prince Moulay Hassan Sports Complex in Rabat.

The lethal frontwoman reckons that her side will underestimate no side, including Desiree Ellis’ team.

“I don’t think the opening game is a decider of the tournament, and by the way, it’s not only South Africa we will be facing. It’s a whole tournament,” Oshoala told cafonline.com.

“We are not going to be seated talking tough about just one team [South Africa]. Obviously, they are a very strong team, a very competitive one as well. Maybe the mindset of our team and theirs may not be the same, but we have the likes of Cameroon, Morroco, and other great teams in Africa to face.

“We are just basically focused on working on ourselves and we are not so bothered about playing South Africa. When we get to the phase of playing them, we will cross it.”

This will be Oshoala’s fifth AWCON appearance and she has divulged that it’s been a rollercoaster of different emotions having endured good times and bad times, with injuries and all of that.

“As usual, I’m in the competition mode, I’m excited, working hard for the tournament, after a couple of years and after being cancelled the last time [2020], we are set for the big one again,” added the four-time African Women’s Player of the Year.

“First of all, I think we need to understand football, talking about shifting focus and replicating the same performances, I am always ready to give 100 per cent whenever I am given the opportunity to play. I am in a positive mood going into the tournament.

“For me personally, the main goal is to qualify for the 2023 Women’s World Cup, because, at the end of the day, that is all that matters and every other thing coming after or with it is just secondary. The primary aim is to qualify, of course, we want to win [AWCON] but the main goal is to qualify for the World Cup.”

Nigeria are drawn in Group C, alongside rivals South Africa, Botswana and debutants Burundi.

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