The Enyimba International stadium, Aba, Abia state will be the hot spot come Thursday, June 17, 2021, as the most talked about ‘Oriental Derby’ in the country is decided between host, Enyimba International F.C and Rangers International F.C as both sides jostle for the maximum points in a rescheduled match day 20, NPFL 2020/21 fixture.
When both sides clashed in the earlier fixture in Enugu, Rangers smiled away with a 2-0 victory courtesy of goals from Christian Nnaji and Elijah Ani from the spot.
Going into this fixture, Enyimba currently occupy the 7th spot on the log with 41 points from 24 matches while neighbors, Rangers are placed 6th with 42 points from 26 matches prosecuted.
Visits by the ‘Flying Antelopes’ to Aba in previous encounters have not been easy for neither sides and this won’t be an exception as the coach Salisu Yusuf tutored side confront coach Fatai Osho’ wards as both sides fight for vital points to catch up with the pacesetters in the ongoing season.
Rangers will be banking on the experiences of its backline anchored around Uche John, Ernest Governor, Ebuka Anthony and Temitope Olusesi to neutralize the expected bombardment from Anayo Iwuala, Tosin Omoyele, Samad Kadiri and Victor Mbaoma while Chiamaka Madu, Charles Tiesso and Godspower Aniefiok might be called upon to anchor the midfield and supply the fluidity for the attacking duo of Christian Nnaji and Israel Abia to convert for the expected victory in Aba.
Coach Salisu who had once been on the saddle at the ‘Peoples Elephant’ dugout will be looking to get another win over his former employer and said, “I believe in the players I have to do a double over Enyimba. No doubt, Enyimba is a good side anytime, any day but we are equally a good side and we hope to have some luck on our side to get the result we want in Aba. We believe that we can leave Aba with the maximum points.”
Looking at the current form of both sides that have won the top league shield fifteen times between them (Eight times for the ‘Peoples Elephant’ and seven times for the ‘Flying Antelopes’), Rangers has been able to scoop eight points from available fifteen while host, Enyimba, was able to collect seven points from the same available fifteen points.
Cumulatively, Enyimba have the upper hand in the twenty-five times both sides have clashed since 2008 with the ‘Aba Elephants’ winning eleven times while the ‘Flying Antelopes’ have won nine times with five encounters ending on even notes and the visitors will be looking to earn its tenth win in this fixture.