AITEO CUP Q/F: CHAMPIONS CONFRONT RANGERS IN KANO

___Maikaba optimistic of S/F spot

Mfon Patrick

Aiteo Cup defending champions Akwa United will on Wednesday continue their quest to retain their crown when they file out against Enugu Rangers in one of the quarter final matches scheduled to take place at Sani Abacha Stadium in Kano.

The Promise Keepers who have scored fourteen goals in their previous five matches, finished as Group D runners up with six points from three games at Aba centre on their way to the last eight of the competition where they will engage Enugu Rangers who were Group B leaders at Kano centre.

Akwa United who are gunning for their third trophy in four years arrived the ancient city of Kano Sunday evening and had their first trainnig session Monday afternoon in preparations for the crucial game.

Coach Abdu Maikaba traveled with strong energetic squad for the match, but he will miss the services of mercurial midfielder Ifeanyi Ifeanyi and speedy winger Ezekiel Bassey. Both players sustained injuries during the group phase of the competition in Aba last week but the Kano born tactician is optimistic that his men will get the job done on Wednesday.

“The Aiteo Cup is an interesting competition, that is why we are taking it one game at a time. Our quarter final match with Rangers is an important game for us as the defending champions. The mission here in Kano is to advance to the semi final of this competition.

“The boys have done well in the previous rounds and they are fully prepared and ready for Wednesday’s match. We have a target and that is to retain our title as champions. My players are aware of the importance of every match and I believe that those that will be selected to represent us will make themselves and all our fans proud”.

The free scoring Promise Keepers have conceded in only two of their last five Aiteo Cup matches and victory against the Flying Antelope will see them move a step closer to retaining their crown.

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