Republic of Ireland centre back, Louise Quinn has acknowledged the Super Falcons of Nigeria as a massive threat but assures her team will play for pride and not look for any excuses when they face Nigeria in their final group B encounter at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
Ireland have battled with injury concerns to Louise Quinn and Denise O’Sullivan over the past two weeks. Heather Payne was forced to pull out of their second match against Canada after her hamstring tightened up in the warm-up to the game.
The Girls in Green also had to contend with a very difficult travel arrangement. Based in Brisbane, the team flew to Sydney for their first fixture against co-host Australia, returned to Brisbane, flew over 4,000km to Perth to trade tackles against the Canadians before returning back to Brisbane ahead of their final match against the Super Falcons of Nigeria on Monday.
Despite these challenges faced by the team, Quinn is refusing to make excuses out of them.
“I don’t think we’ve used any sort of excuses,” the 33-year-old centre-half said.
“Denise definitely got a knock, I’ve definitely had a knock, thankfully it’s one of those things that hasn’t been able to keep us out. We’re not going to use any excuses.
Louise Quinn had a foot ligament damage towards the end of Ireland’s 1-0 loss to Australia in their World Cup opener. She was forced to play through the pain barrier against Canada and is expected to do so again against Nigeria’s Super Falcons. The nine-time African champions are aiming to reach the last 16 after their brilliant win against co-host Australia on Friday.
Republic of Ireland have already been eliminated from the FIFA Women’s World Cup after losing their first two matches but Quinn said they still have to play for pride, despite the Super Falcons being a massive threat.
“We’ve got to work our ass off to get something out of it,” she noted.
“We can’t get out of the group but that doesn’t mean this game is any less important for us. It’s absolutely about pride it’s about proving ourselves, it’s about bringing that kind of joy with us back and trying to make sure we do it for the people at home.
“And most importantly ourselves, because you can see from the games we’ve done well, we’ve competed, we’ve really held it to other teams but we’ve got to still prove it and put something on the board to show it.
“We’ve come into the group always knowing that Nigeria were going to be a massive threat – that’s always been our mindset.
“They’ve got their star striker [Barcelona’s Asisat Oshoala], they’ve got real pace, they’ve got a fantastic shape, they defensively work hard, their recovery runs, their quality on the ball. They’ve always been a threat.”
Nigeria will face Republic of Ireland on Monday, July 31 by 11am in their last Group B match and the nine-time African champions need just a draw to reach the last 16