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Ahead of the Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL) matchday10 tie between Abia Warriors and Rangers International FC, players and fans of the two teams have been told to expect fireworks during the Oriental derby clash in Okigwe, Abia State this weekend.
Team manager of the Flying Antelopes, Amobi Ezeaku, gave the warning while speaking to LEADERSHIP Sports, saying despite Abia Warriors current predicament in the league, they would not underestimate the Imama Amapakabo-led squad.
Rangers will go into the game as the better side following their 1-0 victory at home over Warri Wolves FC while Abia Warriors (in 19th position in NPFL table) suffered their fifth defeats of the season after falling to Dakkada FC 2-1 at the Nest of Champions Stadium in Uyo last weekend.
“Oriental derbies come with its distinctive spirit. We are going into that game with optimism and hoping that we can get the best results at the end of the match,” he said.
“We are aware that Coach Imama Amapakabo was with us in the past and understand the terrain and philosophy of Rangers. It is going to be a tough game. We respect Abia Warriors as much as they are placed among the bottom teams for now.”
“The game in Okigwe promises to be a tough game and it is an unpredictable game. But for me, we hope to get the best result. Abia Warriors and the fans should expect fireworks in Okigwe.”
Ezeaku said the club management is satisfied with the performance of Coach Salisu Yusuf-led squad in the 2020/21 league season so far.
“I’m quite satisfied with the team performance because it is a team that continues to improve after each game and Coach Salisu Yusuf is doing everything humanly possible to make sure that the team is in top shape going forward.”
According to him, the Flying Antelopes who are the 2016 league winners are not under any pressure to win the NPFL title.
“In 2016 when I joined Rangers, we won the league after 32-years and this 2021 it’s the hope for every club to win the league. We want to fight for the trophy, but we don’t want to be under any pressure. So, we will look at where we are at the end of week 38 in the NPFL,” he concluded.