September 23 – While FIFA president Gianni Infantino has been walking the halls of the UN and the financial district of New York, meeting with heads of state and financiers, FIFA’s general secretary Fatma Samoura has been treading the path of women’s football in Africa.
Leading a FIFA delegation to the inaugural Aisha Buhari Cup, a women’s football tournament featuring six African National teams, in Lagos, Nigeria, Samoura called for more capacity building for the women’s game across Africa and, most importantly, more competitive opportunity for teams.
The FIFA delegation includes FIFA’s Chief Women’s Football Officer Sarai Bareman, as well as FIFA Council member Isha Johansen and CAF Vice President Kanizat Ibrahim.
The Aisha Buhari Cup is an initiative of Nigeria’s Firat Lady, Dr. Ms. Aisha Buhari, and aims to inspire women in Africa to play the game as well as empower the women who compete in it.
The event was taken as an opportunity to open a wider discussion of how the women’s game can be advanced in Nigeria and across the African continent.
“The more we expand the opportunities for our girls to gain experience though tournaments on a continental level, the greater the chances of seeing more African teams qualify to the expanded FIFA Women’s World Cup,” said Samoura.
Bareman added: “The skill and natural talent in African women’s football is simply outstanding and this tournament has provided a great window to view this. FIFA will work closely with our MAs throughout the continent, like the NFF and its dedicated women’s football team, to build clear strategies and roadmaps for African teams.”
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