Rivers United walk tight rope in Tanzania


By Abiodun Adewale.

Nigeria’s sole representative on the continent, Rivers United face an uphill task of progressing in the CAF Confederation Cup as they go into their second leg quarter-final clash against Tanzania’s Young Africans on Sunday (today) with a two-goal deficit from the first leg, Sunday PUNCH reports.

The current Nigeria Professional Football League champions slumped to a 2-0 defeat at home last week, leaving them with a mountain to climb at the 60,000 capacity Benjamin Mkapa Stadium, in the Tanzania capital of Dar es Salam.

Although the first leg defeat was blamed on injuries which rocked the squad, the Pride of Rivers arrived Tanzania on Friday and some of the affected players, including left-back Ebube Duru and Joseph Onoja made the trip.

The team has had training sessions at the venue and coach Stanley Eguma remains optimistic about their chances of overturning the result.

“We lost at home but we have another 90 minutes to play here in Tanzania. We made some mistakes in the first leg and we are looking forward to an improved game on Sunday,” Eguma said during the pre-match interview.

“The team is positive, we cannot predict, but we will work hard. The game isn’t over, there is still 90 minutes to play and we are ready. Hopefully our plans will work out,” he said.

The winner of this fixture will face the winner of the quarter-final game between Pyramids of Egypt and Marumo Gallants of South Africa in the semi-final.