Good Morning guys,
It’s the end of the week as our attention is now firmly fixed on salvaging our season, making some lemonades from the lemons handed us by the events of the past six months. This would go down as a season of hard lessons and while it is easier to hide behind ‘mistakes made’ and all, our next goal has to be a decent finish.
The title race has gotten much more interesting with the addition of FC Ifeanyiubah to the mix. An away win to Warri Wolves last weekend meant the Anambra Warriors have now launched their own title hunt and the fact that Wikki Tourists and Enyimba have yet to visit them in Nnewi this season means that it would be silly writing them off.
I’ve seen them play a number of games this season, one of which was their 2-0 annihilation of Rangers. OK, 2-0 is hardly a whipping but what was impressive is the manner of the victory. It was the most one sided Oriental Derbies I’d seen in my history of the NPFL. I think Rangers had just one meaningful chance all game, a penalty shout that the referee was unmoved about.
OK, this is not ThatFCIfeanyiubah blog but it looks likely that our own Continental hopes rests to some degree on how they fare in the coming weeks. We travel to play them on week 37, a fixture which could most likely be our last league game of the season. I’m not being pessimistic but I don’t think we can get anything from that tie. Everyone well versed in League affairs can tell why.
If you’re not, I can offer some education in that direction. At that time, they would be looking for a good finish, probably the title or a Continental place. Already they’re sitting 4 points off the current Leaders albeit in 6th position and they look on a good run that may not be slowing down soon. Their home support means dropping points at home look near impossible. That team with their momentum, (one defeat in twelve games in all competitions) believes they can finish in the Continental places. I believe so too.
Their fall back would be the Federation Cup where they have Crown FC standing in their way to the final. You’d think they would dispatch Crown and it’s more likely to be us and not Nasarawa United against them in the finals. If both teams (Enyimba and FC Ifeanyiubah) indeed make it to the finals and either team finishes in the top three places on the League table, the other finalist gets to the CAF Confederations Cup next season.
Its a long way out with a lot of IFs and we are not a team that leaves our destinies in the hands of another, but things are looking quite interesting for us as the season comes to an end. I’m banking on us to have a good run in, win as many as we can of our outstanding and remaining fixtures and do our best in the Federation Cup. But do I think we would we finish in the top three? It would take remarkable circumstances for that to happen.
Why? Because its hard to pick points away from home at this time in the season, moreover its something we’ve hardly done this term. Add that to the fact that our League season ends one week before everyone else’s. So if we won’t, then it won’t hurt wishing FC Ifeanyiubah does. I mean it opens up an opportunity that means beating Nasarawa United in the semis becomes our ticket to the Continent.
If however they won’t finish in the top three then we have to beat them in the finals. They most certainly have some respect for us but on a neutral turf in Lagos most likely and with the sort of owner they have, you’ll think they could be much more fired up and motivated in the finals. I mean their owner is the newest sugar daddy in the land, he will love the carnival. That, you would agree has already tilted that encounter slightly already.
I’ve just got these thoughts rummaging in my head, I most certainly hope they make some sense to you ;). One thing is most crucial in all of this, we can afford to go trophyless this season but we have to be in the Continent next year!
We play Akwa United tomorrow at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium, there will be a befitting preview on the blog by this time tomorrow.