The clustering sojourn to the last stride has been nothing but an actionable thrill between the Nigeria-Ghana powerhouses, as we set to witness a scintillating masterpiece at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City, Edo State. In what we themed as the “Jollof Battle” – a captivating showdown that will either decide or cut short their fates to represent the West African region at the Women’s continental elite football competition.
Delta Queens, who had their fair share with other West African counterparts – putting three past USFA of Burkina Faso in the Opening game, Sam Nelly of Benin were also not left out in a 2-0 defeat to the Nigerian champions in Group A of the WAFU Zone B qualification playoffs for the 2023 CAF Women’s Champions League.
Meanwhile, Ampem Darkoa of Ghana were drawn in Group B together with Amis Du Monde of Togo and Atletico FC of Ivory Coast, who didn’t fail to unleash their attacking prowess with Mary Amponsah’s double brace cemented the Togolese contingents in a total humiliation. However, the Ghanaians continued in high fashion as the woman of the moment took off from where she left to stun the Ivorian side; a brace and another woman of the match award in her belts.
Delta Queens, however, was stretched out in a dramatic semi-final on Monday to see off Ivory Coast’s Athletico FC 3-2 to have themselves in the final, after a Mercy Omokwo’s 68th-minute equaliser was all the Nigerian side required to force the game into extra time before the team’s captain, Taiwo Afolabi’s 106th-minute winner sealed the comeback.
Ampem Darkoa, seamlessly booked their place in the second decider on Monday, with the Ghanaian dominance too much to handle by Benin’s Sam Nelly in an emphatic 6-1 victory; led by a Tracey Twum hat-trick and one each from her teammates ruthlessly dismantled their opponents to send a warning message across.
One can not deny the fact that Ampem Darkoa’s free-scoring form tips them as the favourites, having recorded 13 goals and conceded four in their three matches so far, but Delta Queens have shown class up front with an attacking potency of their own, though a little bit of shaky resilience in the defensive after conceding twice in their game coming into this showdown, altogether remains an unbeaten campaign for the 2022/23 NWFL champions.
With both teams ready to trade tackles for the only WAFU Zone B representative slot at this year’s edition of CAF Women’s Champions League in Cote d’Ivoire, nonetheless, an enthralling final contest awaits us with everything on the line for the two sides, as they will now face off at Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin City.