Contrasting feelings for Nigeria's Dennerby and South Africa's Ellis after Awcon final showdown

The two coaches shared their thoughts after their big clash to climax the continental women's fiesta

Nigeria coach Thomas Dennerby is full of praise for his outfit following Saturday's penalty victory over South Africa in the final of the 2018 Africa Women Cup of Nations in Ghana.

After a goalless 120 minutes of action, the Super Falcons proved their superiority in the shootout, coming from behind to claim a 4-3 win at the Accra Sports Stadium.

The result handed the West Africans their ninth title of the biennial championship.

"It’s been a wonderful tournament for us," Dennerby said at the post-match conference.

"This was the best passing game we’ve had in the tournament and the defence was alert on the day, so I must commend the entire team for a good job well done.

"We are happy once again and we will go back, celebrate and start preparing for the World Cup next year.

"Going forward I think women’s football in Africa is fast improving and very soon it will rival the men’s competition in terms of support and interest.

"The game was very tough in all aspects and South Africa showed character and they did their best to get yet another victory but today our team was more compact."

Linda Motlhaho and Lebogang Ramalepe fell victims in the shootout for South Africa after Nigeria's Onome Ebi missed the first kick of the series.

"First of all, I will like to congratulate Nigeria for winning the Awcon for a record nine times," Banyana Banyana coach Desiree Ellis said.

"They have been a power house of women’s football for quite a while now and continue to dominate.

"My team did their best, I mean, we knew that Nigeria was going to come hard at us in the game and they did throughout."

Saturday's outcome makes it four Awcon final defeats for South Africa, three of which have come at the hands of the Super Falcons.

"We had some early chances that I think we should have buried, but in all it was a very good exercise for us going into the World Cup," continued, Ellis, whose team have secured a first ever qualification to the global showpiece by virtue of finishing among the Awcon top three.

"We came here with the vision of qualifying for the World Cup because we knew it was now or never and indeed we achieved that.

"Winning the trophy would have been a bonus but we gave it our all, but you know that penalty is a game of lottery and we couldn’t capitalise on Nigeria first. So all in all we are content with our tournament here."

The next Awcon is set for the Republic of Congo in 2020.