New Layout Secondary School, Enugu and West Itam Secondary School, Akwa Ibom have qualified for the finals of the Etisalat U-15 School Cup finals which will hold in Lagos having emerged tops from the regional play-offs in Enugu state.
The Enugu State-based school booked its place to the national playoffs with a victory over a hapless Holy Ghost Secondary School, Ebonyi last weekend at St Patrick’s College, Emene in Enugu State.
The Enugu representatives who scored 17 goals in their last two matches were held to a 1-1 draw by Imo’s Owerri City College in the opening game but went on to demolish St John’s Science and Technical College, Anambra 9-0 and white-washed Ebonyi State representatives 8-0.
West Itam Secondary School, Akwa Ibom on the other hand topped Group A after winning two matches and draw one. They finished with seven points from three matches after leaving it late before sealing their qualification in Lagos.
The Chief Coach of New Layout School Enugu, Uche Lofty, expressed happiness for being able to guide his wards out their group, noting that he was very pleased with their performance.
He disclosed that they will take key learning from the play-offs in preparation for the finals in Lagos.
“We will go back and intensify our preparation by concentrating on tactics and pace. We are going to put the team through the principle of football ethics, tactical discipline, team spirit and responsibility”, he said.
On the other hand, the coach of the Akwa Ibom representatives, Coach Emmanuel Ebong described the tournament as a very good platform for discovering and developing new talents.
He said that team work and determination came through on the field of play for his boys.
“My boys put up a good show and played as a team, they connected seamlessly on the pitch of play, dominating the game with good ball possessions all through the game, so we are happy that we top our group and are delighted to be going to Lagos for the finals” he quipped.
Both coaches lauded the telecommunication giant for the football initiative and stated that seeing a multinational company such as Etisalat throw its weight in support of grassroots football is highly commendable.
More organisations should emulate this to augment government efforts in the area of sports development.”
The teams will vie for the Etisalat Under-15 School Cup trophy alongside other teams that emerge from other zones.