Canada goalkeeper Kailen Sheridan has described Chiamaka Nnadozie as an incredible keeper following her penalty save in the goalles draw against Nigeria in the second group B opening fixture at the 2023 Women’s World Cup.
Nnadozie parried away Sinclair’s shot from the spot in the 50th minute Friday after the Canadian veteran had earned the penalty after being clipped by Nigerian forward Francisca Ordega.
Sheridan said Sinclair would convert the penalty “nine times out of 10” but added, “that’s just the game.”
“You just have to be ready. It’s an incredible save,” Sheridan said, describing Nnadozie as “an incredible keeper.”
Nnadozie’s teammate Ifeoma Onumonu said she had the feeling that the shot stopper would save the spot kick.
“In this group, in this tournament, penalties can win games,” “For me, when that happened, I kind of had a feeling she was going to save it.”
Sinclair’s 190 international goals is an all-time record — for both women’s and men’s soccer — and she’s aiming to become the first player to score in six World Cups. It didn’t happen in Canada’s opening Group B game.
In the Super Falcons’ last major international tournament, the 2022 Women’s Africa Cup of Nations, Nigeria lost to Morocco in a semifinal penalty shootout, 5-4, with Nnadozie between the goalposts.
At age 18, in the 2019 Women’s World Cup, Nnadozie became the youngest goalkeeper to keep a clean sheet in Women’s World Cup history, with a 2-0 group stage victory over South Korea.
After her draw-preserving save on the Canadian captain in Melbourne, Nnadozie pointed to her head with gloved hands. After the match, she said the gesture was to remind herself: “Come on, girl, come on. This is another game. We still got some minutes to play. Don’t relax.”
Nigeria will lock horns against co-host Australia on Thursday in Brisbane