Ethiopian national women side “Lucy” is now just two matches away from booking a place in the 2012 nations’ cup of African women to be held in Zimbabwe. The two leg final qualification encounter is against Tanzania with the first leg taking place in May at Addis Ababa.
Best player of the match, Rehima Zergaw was twice on target. The home side turned down a 4-2 first leg defeat to hammer the visitors Egypt to a humiliating 4-0 return leg score line and get through into the final qualification campaign with flying colours after an aggregate 6-2 victory. Though Egypt famous for their time killing tactic tried and succeeds nearly for half an hour before Rehima scored the opener with a marvellous header. The capacity home crowd was ecstatic all day. Lucy returned from the dressing rooms in hunger and it took just eight minutes before Rehima grabbed her second goal that gave Ethiopia an automatic qualification berth. Then after it was a high hill to mount for the high altitude burnt out Egypt side that tried a minor come back but to no avail. Twenty minutes in to the final whistler it was show time with Helen Seifu’s crafty free kick from 20 meters that found the back of the net and sent the home fans erupting in delight. When the visitors busy for being delivered from the hosts wrath, dribbling wizard Birtukan Gebrekrestos volleyed home the final nail in the coffin four minutes in to the final whistle to see off Egypt in crying. At the final whistle Lucy performed lap of honour to pay their gratitude for diehard home fans that believed in them despite the heavy set back from the first leg away match.
Lucy’s next encounter is Tanzania that demolished Namibia to a 7-2 aggregate victory. The match takes place in Addis Ababa in May with the return leg in Darussalam two weeks later. Though they performed well above the public’s expectation, the visitors hardly to stand the altitude were much lower than Lucy’s standard many asked later after all how they lost 4-2 to such encounter. The final qualification two leg matches is against a strong adversary Tanzania that not only gotten through with distinction but the side that defeated Lucy last year even in Addis Ababa. EFF is expected to give due consideration for Lucy, becoming Ethiopian pride recently. Many spectators at the stadium suggested that a moral boosting money award for the big win, early call to camp preparation and friendly international matches should be the Ethiopian Football Federation’s priority and set a serious agenda to help get Lucy motivated for their final big encounters in May.