Good morning Brethren,
The lads played out a goalless draw with Rayon Sport in Kigali yesterday as both teams sought a semifinals ticket in the ongoing CAF Confederations Cup. Here’s my three things from that fixture.
1. Not a bad result but are we capable of better? Failing to concede away from home in this stage of the competition is totally laudable but on the basis of the quality of this opposition, you’d think the glass is half empty rather than half filled. In the days leading up to this encounter, several posts online suggested our opponents were in awe of us and they rarely gave themselves a chance.
But even Rayon’s biggest critic would admit that there wasn’t so much to choose between the two teams. Make no mistakes about it, we are odds on to go through next week but when was the last time we dominated a game away from home? Or aren’t we that big a team anymore? A draw is a good result for us but this was a team we are lot better than.
2. Old wines are tasty: Theophilus Afelokhai was again the hero yesterday with his remarkable and sometimes unbelievable saves. His sharp reflex to push away a goal bound effort in the first period and his good quick decision making skills proved vital time and time again in the course of the game. He’s had a good run in goal for us and it’s difficult not to see why.
Dare Ojo was another player whose selection impressed me. Maybe he didn’t do anything spectacular except the usual midfield runnings around plus the hustling and bustling with it but it was good to see him in midfield and see him effective there. Since his signing, he has had some spell at Right Back but with Farouk Mohammed missing yesterday, Dare put in a decent shift. Also deserving of mentions is Ifeanyi Anaemena.
3. No Mfon Udoh, No problem: I had to mention this following the awkward situation the club found itself heading into this game. And although we did miss tonnes of chances in the course of the game, there wasn’t so much to show that we missed Mfon by any standards.
The gaffer started an attacking quartet of Alalade, Mustapha, Adetunji and Osadiaye leaving out Dimgba and Bashir. And just as the CARA game in Aba our strikers failed to hit the back of the net. It does appear that our union with Mfon is at it’s sunset but the club is surely readying for life without him.