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Eguma: Rivers United Must Beat Rangers To Bounce Back From Poor Start to New Season

Eguma: Rivers United Must Beat Rangers To Bounce Back From Poor Start to New Season

Stanley Eguma has declared that his Rivers United side will need to claim all three points against Enugu Rangers in Wednesday’s NPFL matchday-four clash at Yakubu Gowon Stadium, Port Harcourt, to put their 2019/2020 domestic top flight back on track, Completesports.com reports.

The Pride of Rivers Technical Manager spoke after his side lost 1-0 to FC Ifeanyi Ubah 1-0 in a thrilling clash in Nnewi on Sunday.

Chigozie Chilekwu’s sixth minute left footed strike from inside the area separated both sides despite Rivers United’s near total dominance. And a frustrated Eguma felt hard done following his forwards’ inability to score in spite of several opportunities carved out.

Though Ossy Martins and Bright Onyedikachi, both former FC Ifeanyi Ubah players, were the major culprits in the visiting team’s wastefulness, Eguma refused to single any player out for blame but said that they must start to convert their chances during games.

Rivers United have scored only once in three league games so far, and conceded two in as many matches, amassing only two points, highlighting their worst start to a season in recent campaigns, despite their delightful play and dominance in the matches.


L-R: Stanley Eguma and his assistant Ndubuisi and other Rivers United backroom staff.

The former Nigeria U23s assistant coach has consequently told his players that they must begin to score and this must start in Wednesday’s top of the bill clash against seven-time champions, Rangers.

“Against Rangers (on Wednesday), it is a massive game,” Eguma said.

“Rangers is a big team, playing in the continent. We are ready. We have to perfect our strategy to ensure that we win that match.

“That game is very, very important to us. A win over Rangers will bring back confidence into the team and put our season back on track.”

Rivers United defeated Rangers 3-0 when the Flying Antelopes visited last season.

Eguma is visibly worried that his front men freeze out often inside the final third, but he refuses to play to blame anyone.

“Football is a team game. I look at my team holistically, as a unit. I don’t single out individual players for blame.

“We win together and when defeat comes, like this one, we also take it as a team.

“But I must say that the strikers need to be more efficient and clinical in front of goal. They should work harder and be able to take their chances as they come”.

Eguma, who is called ‘Zagalo’ pays tribute to FC Ifeanyi Ubah team, saying they are a good side.

“FC Ifeanyi Ubah is not a bad team at all. They are young, full of energy, itching to make their their marks in the game of football. They got their chance and took it.

“That proved to be the decider. I commend them for their determination, hard work and fighting spirit”.

Major wins on away grounds has highlighted the 2019/2020 season and Eguma could not hold back his admiration for the League Management Company (LMC) – organisers of the domestic top flight, saying they are doing a good job to take the NPFL one step forward.

Eguma added: “The league is gradually blossoming. You can see that on the number of wins and draws away from home so far.

“It shows the coaches are working hard and the players are also changing their mentality about away games.

“There is a clear remarkable improvement in the league. The referees are doing well too.

“I must commend the League Management Company, LMC, l kudos to them.”

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