CAF CONFED CUP
- Nigeria’s CAF Confederation Cup 2019/2020 hopeful, Rangers
International F.C of Enugu left Lagos for Libreville, Gabon thursday for the first leg, first round encounter with competition’ first timers, Association Sportive Pelican, confident of a fruitful outing.
After drawing bye in the preliminary round due to its good run in last edition of the competition, the Flying Antelopes with some fresh and experienced campaigners in continental football in its fold look set to shock the Gabonese side that eliminated D.R Congo side, A.S Maniema Union 4-2 on penalties after aggregate score over two legs of the stage stood at 2-2 as both games ended in 1-1 draw.
Under caretaker manager, Coach Benedict Ugwu, the seven time Nigeria league champions have their work cut out at Stade D’Angondje, Libreville, Gabon as youthful gaffer of the host, Gidas Arnold Ndoumou line up his wards that have conceded a goal in each of their last four games in all competitions.
With talents like experienced campaigners in Ikechukwu Ibenegbu and Uche John as well as power-playing Nnamdi Egbujuo and Obinna Eleje joining forces with Ifeanyi George in attack and Tony Shimaga screening the back line where Isiaka Oladuntoye and Senegalese international, Pape Ousmane Sane hold sway to provide enough coverage for the man between the sticks, the Flying Antelopes look set to fly higher above the Pelicans. After winning eleven and losing one in pre-season friendly games as well as a weeklong close camping exercise in the serene, Nanka
community of Orumba-North LGA of Anambra state, the squad seem to have blended with the new players getting accustomed to the ‘Never Say Die’ playing philosophy of Rangers which will be on display in this encounter.
Coach Ugwu said on the fixture, “I have a strong belief that with the talents at our disposal and the training regime we have gone through in the pre-season, we shall come back with a good result by God’s grace. We don’t know much of our opponent but our preparations have always been to play against any opponent.
“Surely, it won’t be easy as there are no more small teams in the game. They did well in the preliminary round but I believe that we have all it takes to stop them in this round,” concludes the coach fondly called Surugede in his playing days in the Nigerian league.