“Smart” Toni Payne will be an important asset for Nigeria, says Francisca Ordega

The former American youngster will be a great addition to the Superhawks, according to the ex-Washington Spirit star

Francisca Ordega believes Toni Payne will excel in her international ties with Nigeria because of her shrewdness and incredible energy level.

Payne had played for the US at U17, U20 and U23 levels before deciding, a few months after moving to Seville in 2018, to represent Nigeria through her parents at senior level.

Two years after changing nationality, she made her unofficial debut against CSKA Moscow on Wednesday and played for the duration of the Super Falcons’ 1-0 victory.

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After her good debut against the Russian club in the Turkish Women’s Cup, Hoddle, who played alongside her, praised her quality and believes she can be a tremendous asset to the team.

“I can feel her energy on the pitch. She’s a really smart girl,” said Ordega goal.

“I think we are creating a lot of competition for the team. When you play in the same position as them, you have to work really hard.

“It will take a while for her to blend in with the team but I’m glad she is here. I think she has a lot to offer to help the team. I hope she’ll keep the fire burning. “

Despite an unforgettable performance in the second half, the Super Falcons impressed in the first 45 minutes and claimed victory. Ordega prepared Chinwendu Ihezuo for the 19th minute winner.

After the former Washington Spirit star formed a good partnership with the debutant on the pitch, he opened up the secret behind their synergy.

“We haven’t met before, but I’ve played in the American league for a few years and I understand the style,” she continued.

“She’s from there. I know how they do their runs, deep runs and more. Every time I hold the ball, I always see her [Payne] is moving.

“I’ve only done what I’ve done based on experience and because I’ve been there.”

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