Former Nigerian U-20 international, Abubakar Lawal, has joined Rwandan first division outfit, A.S Kigali, after a successful trial.
Based in Kigali, capital city of Rwanda, the Club announced the signing of Lawal on a two-year deal with an option for extension.
The deadly attacker who is now nikenamed “the Sniper” by Coach of his new East African club, Eric Nshimiyimana, after netting three goals in two friendlies, left Nigerian Professional Football League side, Nasarawa United, after joining the team in 2019 where he featured in eighteen league games, scoring seven goals and providing three assists before the 2019/2020 Nigerian elite league season was abruptly ended on match day 25 following the outbreak of the global coronavirus pandemic.
Overwhelmed by the move to Rwanda, the fast-footed striker says he will utilize the opportunity given to him to play for “A.S.K”, as the team is nicknamed, and that he can not wait to bring his wealth of experience to bear towards the success of the club.
“My joy knows no bounds to have put pen on paper with A.S Kigali, and I feel even more delighted that the club have given me this opportunity”, Lawal said.
The former Wikki Tourists of Bauchi and Kano Pillars’ attacking sensation ranked A.S. Kigali high and described the 16-team Rwandan Premier League as competitive, but was upbeat that he would weather the storm.
“A.S. Kigali are a big club, not only in Rwanda, but on the African Continent as they also play in the CAF competitions like the Confederations Cup.
“They have some reasonable number of players in the Rwandan senior national team, and a historic home stadium, the Amahoro National Stadium.
“And the hospitality here is second to none.
“They have a tradition, and I hope I can bring some Midas touch into the team, while my singular goal here is to help them win laurels, both in the domestic and continental club competitions.
“I am going to work extra-hard, and get the support of the team to achieve success”, the 24-year-old assured.
The Sokoto State-born Nigerian player, however, thanked his former Club, Nasarawa United, for supporting his football career.
“It was not easy taking this decision, but in life, you need to make progress.
“I respect the team, the management, coaches, teammates and the ever-vociferous fans. Their love is amazing.
“I wish to, most sincerely, thank everyone in Nasarawa United for giving me the platform to improve on my career. Hopefully, I won’t disappoint them in my new club.”
Coach Eric described Lawal as a good player who needed more games to blend with his club mates
“The striker we have been working with for days, he is a player who has a lot of tricks; he is a player who knows how to stand on the pitch.
“He knows how to play with others; he is a player who meets all requirements for a striker.
“The rest is to give him a lot of games”, Eric said.
Meanwhile, Chairman of A.S. Kigali, Mr. Shema Ngoga, has expressed his side’s delight to secure the services of the Nigerian.
“We wanted a good striker who can give us more input because we will be representing Rwanda in the CAF Confederation Cup for next year – in fact, for the second time in a row.
“We want to go far in the league, so we try to bring more experienced players to the team so that we can have winning expectations in the seasons ahead.
‘We want to be one of the top-qualifiers next year. Our aim is to win as a Kigali team. So, that is why we are building a strong team.
“And Lawal is a top-class player with all the qualities of a world-class striker”, the Club’s Chairman remarked.
AS Kigali were on 6th position before the 2019/2020 Rwandan Azam Premier League was also abruptly ended due to the global coronavirus pandemic.