The CAF Confederation Cup action returns tonight as we face the might of Raja Casablanca at the Stade Mohamed V, Casablanca Morocco.
Holding a 1-0 lead from the first leg it’s obvious that they are strong favourites for this one. They’ve been pretty efficient so far in this Competition and as we saw in that first game, they ooze experience and confidence.
So, we’re clearly the underdogs here and that’s absolutely fine. We were underdogs from the moment the draw was made and bar that useless aiteo cup engagement, we would have offered something close to a stronger fight in the first leg. And well, we do look in much better shape heading into this tie compared to that game.
We have enjoyed some Continental joy against North African clubs in the past. Both our Champions League trophies came at the expense of North Africans. That said, we know how mountainous a task it is, asking us to overturn a result in Casablanca. Tough yes but impossible? No.
This game pretty much determines what’s left of this season. One which we end as an “also-ran” team or one that progresses to the final of the one competition no Nigerian club has won.
For this encounter, we all know the drill – try not to concede and try to get a goal or two. The gaffer did speak yesterday of how ready his side was and how they are confident of a victory. I won’t be airing any personal views but trust me, a pleasant surprise would be very welcome.
Tonight, expect the laser lights and the noisy rowdy stadium. Expect the tantrums and gimmicks and hopefully we don’t get a stupid referee who sends us out before we even mount a challenge.
By way of lineups, I expect a similar lineup against us in Aba. The change should be at the heart of defense where Isiaka should return to partner Anaemena. They look good and solid together but don’t sweat it, they will be well tested tonight.
But we have done this before. We have snatched a win out of the jaws of a defeat. We can do it again tonight.
Watch out for links to the livestream via my twitter account. The link will be shared just before the game.
All the best to the lads tonight.