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Mali’s Traore upbeat as teams prepare for Aisha Buhari Cup

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Mali’s Captain Aissata Traore

Despite the pedigree of the teams listed for the maiden Aisha Buhari Invitational Women Football Tournament, Mali striker, Aissata Traore, believes her country has the quality to upset the established nations in women football.

Mali, also known as Women Eagles, will face hosts, Nigeria and 2022 Women Africa Cup of Nations hosts, Morocco in Group A in the preliminary stage of the six-nation women’s championship.

Ahead of the mini-continental showpiece, the Guingamp of France forward is poised to inspire her Malian side to success, while lauding the timing of the women’s tournament.

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“I am just happy and proud of the initiative, especially when it comes from the First Lady of a big country like Nigeria. It will allow teams, especially Mali to better prepare for upcoming competitions. We know that these two teams (Nigeria and Morocco) will be hard to play, but it is a good thing to tackle them and see if we are good to go.”

Stressing on their quest, she added: “Our ambition has never changed – we are challengers and want to go as far as possible in this tournament. So, each match is a final and remains an opportunity to send a strong message.”

Mali will open their campaign against the Super Falcons on September 15 at the Mobolaji Johnson Arena before tackling Morocco later in the showpiece.


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