Nigeria's Super Falcons will be aiming for another FIFA Women's World Cup ticket when they take on Cameroon's Lionesses on Thursday night in the quarterfinal match of the ongoing CAF Women Africa Cup of Nations in Morocco.
The final clash with the neighboring country in Casablanca will determine who is guaranteed a place in Australia & New Zealand next year.
All four teams that made the semifinals at the continental championship in Morocco would have picked automatic tickets for the Women's World Cup, with the team adjudged to have finished fifth presented with another chance for a shot at a Playoff Tournament next year.
Cameroon will come into today's encounter with the mentality of the yam pounder, knowing they have always been second best to Nigeria at this level, and a third consecutive appearance at the FIFA World Cup will certainly appeal to the Indomitable Lionesses.
Interestingly, the fixture has recorded the highest head-to-head encounter more than any other in the history of Nigeria's 12th participation in the now biennial women's continental football.
On record, the neighboring countries have met 12 times with Nigeria winning 10 times, drew once and lost just one time to the emerging powerhouse in African football.
Nigeria got the better of the Cameroonian in the maiden edition of the tournament in 1991 when Super Falcons won 2-0 and 4-0 over two legs to book a slot in the FIFA Women Football tournament in China.
Both sides did not meet again until 1998 when Nigeria hosted the tournament in Ijebu-Ode and Kaduna and Falcons recorded 6-0 win against Cameroon at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium where the two semi-final matches were played.
At the last edition in Ghana, both teams played out a goalless semifinal clash but Nigeria won 4-2 on penalties and went ahead to win the cup against South Africa in the final match.
After a 1-2 defeat at the hands of South Africa's Banyana Banyana in their opening match of Group C last week Monday, Super Falcons rose stoutly to the occasion and won their other two matches with six points and six goals advantage that shot them to the last eight.
Cameroon also started somewhat slowly, drawing with Zambia, but they picked up impressively and their reward is what is actually the most anticipated quarterfinal tie at this tournament.
"We are ready to face Cameroon," said Nigeria coach Randy Waldrum, after his Super Falcons arrived in Morocco's commercial and economic capital, Casablanca on Monday ahead of Thursday's encounter.
Forwards Rasheedat Ajibade and Uchenna Kanu, on two goals each, are expected to start against Cameroon, with Coach Waldrum also expected to keep faith with most of the crew that decimated Burundi in Rabat on Sunday night.