The ‘Flying Antelopes’, Rangers International F.C, will be taking its destiny of a fine season ending and pick a ticket to the continent in its hands, Monday, as they make a road trip to Lafia for a match day 37 fixture against Aiteo cup 2021 finalist, Nasarawa United with the maximum points at stake, their target.
When both sides clashed earlier in the season, a match day 17 fixture, at the Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium, in March 2021, it took two early goals off the boots of Godspower Aniefiok and Chinonso Eziekwe on 2 and 9 minutes to extinguish the flames of the ‘Solid Miners’.
Going into this encounter, the coach Salisu Yusuf led side has been in a rich vein of form even while still occupying the 7th spot for over twelve match days winning three, drawing one and losing one of their last five matches and hopes to end the season on a high with expected wins in the last two fixtures in Lafia and Enugu.
Just as the visiting ‘Flying Antelopes’ will be weary of a certain Silas Nwankwo, the league’ top marksman for the season with eighteen goals thus far, they can also boast of a young sharp shooter, Christian Nnaji, that has also hit double figure for the visitors this term while hoping that the ‘Generals’ in the middle of the pack are alive to their duties for the planned ‘Coup’ to materialize in Lafia.
The coach Bala Nikyu side that recently overcame a stubborn Sunshine Stars in the Aiteo cup 2021 semi-final on penalties after both sides cancelled themselves out with a 2-2 regulation time score line, will be looking to keep the club’ hopes of ending the season as runner-up to champions, Akwa United and pick a ticket to appear in the continent’ premier club competition, CAF Champions league with a win but will be weary of not over-stretching his wards heading into the cup final in Benin city in a few days time.
Before departing the ‘Coal City’ of Enugu for the season’ penultimate encounter against the second placed team on the log, vastly experienced gaffer of Rangers, coach Salisu Yusuf said, “In football you can expect everything. We have our game plans which we believe will give us a positive result that will push us to pick a continental ticket at the end of the season. We are going to Lafia with a positive mind set and with some luck, we shall come back with a positive result. It will be tough against a high scoring side like Nasarawa United but like I said earlier, in football, expect anything.”
Also reacting, captain of the side, Tope Olusesi, who has over five assists in the club’s last eight goals said, “We believe that we can do it in Lafia. No doubt, it will be a difficult match for us but we are determined to make it count for us. It may look impossible but we shall give our all to come out with a very good result that shall move us closer to a continental ticket.”
After the Lafia debacle, the seven-time Nigeria league champions will be back at their backyard, Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium ‘The Cathedral’ to play host to visiting Plateau United in the last league match of the season as coach Abdu Maikaba leads his wards into town for the encounter on Thursday, August 5, 2021 with kickoff slated for 16.00 hours.