Tuesday, November 30, 2021
HomeSportHalimatu Ayinde: The missing link in Super Falcons midfield

Halimatu Ayinde: The missing link in Super Falcons midfield

Some fans of the Super Falcons are yet to recover from the tension of that exhilarating game between the Super Falcons and the Black Queens of Ghana, a match which some say should be a proper AWCON game.

One prominent problem with the Super Falcons was the lack of an enforcer in midfield and how easy it was for their opponents to penetrate through the midfield.

That is where Elskistuna’s Halimatu Ayinde comes in. Unfortunately, the Super Falcons midfield maestro is recuperating from Injury. Ayinde is to Super Falcons, what Wilfred Ndidi is to the Super Eagles.

She is quick, strong and intelligent. Since her days at the U-17 national team, she has been a player that can be trusted. Halimatu is versatile and can pair with anyone in midfield. She formed a formidable partnership with Rita Chikwelu under Randy Waldrum and has played with other midfielders. Together, she formed a strong midfield partnership with Ngozi Okobi and Chikwelu and has also played alongside Toni Payne.

Ayinde scored for Nigeria at the Antalya Cup in Turkey and was the spark for the Falcons in midfield.

She is agile and intelligently reads opposition passes and her interception, ball recovery and quick attacking play was greatly missed by the Super Falcons. Ayinde is business-minded and does the job of a central or defensive midfielder with the highest form of dedication to the team.

Is it of little wonder that she was named Elskistuna of Sweden’s player of the year for her contributions to the club.

Randy Waldrum has tried some players in Ayinde’s position but none has been able to perfectly replicate what the former U-20 star midfielder does in the team.

Rita Chikwelu is no more as fast as she used to be and Toni Payne plays high up the pitch just behind the attackers and does little to help in defense. Rasheedat Ajibade has been tried in midfield too but there is little or nothing that the Atletico Madrid striker can do. Ihuoma Onyebuchi and Amarachi Okoronkwo has got time under Waldrum but none has been able to replicate what Ayinde does, not even Minsk FC’s Regina Ibiang.

As the Super Falcons get ready to face Ivory Coast, a tough African side in the final round of qualifiers, they need their best legs. Hopefully, Halimatu Ayinde would be back to add her experience to the Super Falcons midfield and help the team solve their problems.

Bethel Kalu is a passionate sports writer whose love for writing began as a young boy. He has been writing sports for 7 years has over 500 articles written by him.

Pulse Contributors is an initiative to highlight diverse journalistic voices. Pulse Contributors do not represent the company Pulse and contribute on their own behalf.

Olafare Michael Oluwabukolahttps://t.me/notchplug
A Nationa Diploma holder in Computer Science at LENS POLYTECHNIC Offa, a full-time blogger, beatmaker, modern graphics designer, talent manager, and a vocalist


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