Nigeria’s Flamingoes are now the only African team left to carry the continent’s burden at the ongoing U-17 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Trinidad and Tobago.
The Nigerian girls, their Ghanaian counterparts, the Black Maidens, and South Africa’s Bantwana travelled to the Carribean country to represent Africa.
But the Maidens and Bantwana were eliminated on Monday after the conclusion of the first round.
While the Flamingoes qualified for the quarter-final where they will take on Group B second placed Korea Republic on Thursday, the Ghanaians and South Africans will be returning home.
The Bantwana slumped badly, losing all three group games to Germany, Korea Republic and Mexico. They conceded the highest number of goals — 17 — and they scored just two.
Although Ghana won one of their three games, it was not enough to take them through to the next round as they lost to Canada and Republic of Ireland.
The Black Maidens, who had beaten the Brazillians, were walloped by their Irish counterparts 3-0 in the last game of Group D on Monday.
The Ghanaians scored one goal and let in four.
Red-hot Germany are the tournament’s highest scoring side with 22 goals. Japan follow with 13 and Nigeria are third with 10.
Spain, the only side to maintain a clean slate so far, have scored nine goals and Korea are fifth on the goal-scoring sheet with seven.
It has been a very entertaining first round as no player has received the referee’s marching orders so far.
However, all three African teams top the booking chart with Ghana booked seven times, Nigeria, five and South Africa four times.
Nigeria’s Sarah Nnodim was booked two times and served out her punishment on Sunday as she did not play in the Flamingoes’ last group game against Chile.
The tournament’s three top scorers are Germans. Top on the list is Kyra Malinowski with seven goals. She is followed by compatriot Lena Petermann, who accounted for five of Germany’s 22 goals.
Len Lotzen scored four. Japan’s Kumi Yokohama and Nigeria’s Loveth Ayila have netted four apiece.
The eight quarter_finalists emerged on Monday with the conclusion of the first round games.
They are Nigeria, defending champions Korea DPR, Korea Republic, Spain, Japan, Brazil, Germany and Republic of Ireland.
Those who have booked their early flight home are Mexico, Ghana, South Africa, Venezuela, Canada, Chile and New Zealand.
Hosts Trinidad and Tobago will also watch from the stands.