CAFCC: Plateau United Get USM Alger Test; Enyimba, MFM Draw Bidvest Wits, Djoliba

Nigeria Professional Football League champions Plateau United will face Algeria’s USM Alger in the play-off round of the CAF Confederation Cup.

The Jos club who were eliminated in the first round of the CAF Champions League by another North African club Etoile du Sahel will host the Algerians in the first leg.

Two-time African champions Enyimba have been paired against South Africa’s Bidvest Wits.

The ABSA Premier League outfit who were dumped out of the CAF Champions League by Primero do Agosto of Angola will welcome the Aba giants in the first leg.

 

Enyimba beat Benin Republic side Energie FC 5-2 on aggregate in their first fixture.

MFM FC, who were eliminated from the CAF Champions League by Algerian club MC Alger, will make a return to Mali where they will come up against Djoliba AC de Bamako.

The Olukoya Boys knocked out another Malian club Read Bamako 2-1 on aggregate in the preliminary round of the CAF Champions League.

Fidelis Ilechukwu’s men will entertain the Malians in the first leg.

Nigeria’s otherrepresentatives in the competition, Akwa United, will keep a date with Al Hilal of Sudan in the play-off tie.

Aggregate wins for the four clubs will guarantee them a place in the group stage of the competition.

The first leg ties will be played between 6,7 and 8 of April and the reverse fixtures are scheduled for April 17 and 18.

MFM Ready For MC Alger Clash

Captain of MFM  Austine Opara has said the team is going all out for victory in their second leg CAF Champions League first round tie this weekend against MC Alger in Algeria.

The Lagos team left the shores of thecountry for Algeria on Thursday. MFM, who claimed a 2-1 aggregate victory over Malian giants Real Bamako in the preliminary round, beat Alger 2-1 at the Agege Stadium in the first leg last week.

They are battling it out with the strong and determined algerian side, who defeated Congolese side Otoho d’Oyo 9-0 in Algiers in their last home match in the competition.

Opara believes the team will play well, adding that they have the confidence to play any opponent.  He said although the match would be difficult, MFM were determined to progress to the group stages at the expense of the Algerians.

“The team did well at Agege.  We know MC Alger are not an easy team because they put us under pressure but we played as a team and got the result we wanted,” the captain told Goal on Thursday.

“I believe we can take on any opponent, that’s why we play football. It’s not about their height or anything but the confidence to play any team. That is our motivation.”

MFM Promises To Defeat FM Alger in Algeria

MFM coach Fidelis Ilechukwu has said his team will beat MC Alger in the second leg of their CAF Champions League first round tie in Algiars 2017.

The Algerian side were beaten   2-1 by the Odukoya boys  in the first leg tie at the Agege Stadium on Stadium on Wednesday.

Ikechukwu told reporters after the match that his side would adopt a positive approach  for victory in the next tie.

But Alger’s coach Bernard Casoni   said his team would win the return leg, saying they were disappointed by the first leg defeat.

Ilechukwu said, “It was good we got a win here at home before the second leg in Algeria. We wanted a big win but that didn’t happen, so we have to move on and now think about the second leg. At this point, there is nothing to be afraid of – it is either we fight or get thrashed by them. But I believe we will make it to the group stages.

“We are aware of what they did to their  opponents at home in the previous round and won’t allow that to happen to us. The weather will not be  a problem for us. We will make sure we arrive there on time and acclimatise well. MC Alger adapted well here, I see no reason why we can’t do the same over there.

“I would have loved us to have more players but it wasn’t my fault that we were unable to do that. In the midfield, we had to force Onuwa (Chukwuka) to play as he was not fit for the game.”

Casoni  said, “MFM deserved the win. They fought hard and their second goal was a fantastic one. They won’t find things easy in the second leg because I’m sure we will beat them convincingly in Algiers.

“We are disappointed by  the outcome of the game after putting in so much effort, but we will turn things around at home. I don’t want to give any excuse for our defeat. The weather was different from what we are used to, but I think we coped well with it.”

MFM FC Wins Again In The CAF Champions League

Monsuru Bashiru’s 84th minute screamer gave Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries FC a deserved 2-1 victory over MC Alger at the Soccer Temple in a tough CAF Champions League first round match played at the Soccer Temple, Agege Stadium on Wednesday.

It was indeed a fantastic game for both teams as fans enjoyed the best of football artistry as MFM FC won against  the Algerian team 2-1 courtesy of a goal each from Akuneto Chijioke and Bashiru.

MFM FC dominated the first 15 minutes of the game with different scoring chances but the MCA defenders were resolute with their defending as Monsuru attempted a lob five minutes into the entertaining encounter went inches wide.

Two minutes later Akuneto received a beautiful pass from Onuwa Chukwuka and turned his marker with a nice footwork before releasing a shot which was saved by MC Alger’s goalkeeper Chaal Farid.

Both teams had it good possessing the ball. The visitors caught the hosts napping as Amanda tested MFM goalkeeper Ospino Egbe but the safehands did well to palm away the dangerous ball.

The Olukoya Boys were presented with another chance to open the scoring in the 30th minute of the exchange but Farid parried Nojeem Akinyemi’s long shot to safety.

MFM FC broke the deadlock in the 34th minute.  Akuneto calmly put the Lagos-based team in front from the spot sending the impressive Chaal the wrong way after he was brought down inside box.

The visitors were denied a chance of putting the scores on level terms before the break following a smart save from MFM’s Egbe.

MFM FC had a chance to double the lead two minutes into the second half. Teenage forward, Lawal Abayomi set Akuneto up with a brilliant pass but the latter’s goal-bound attempt was saved by the MC Alger goalkeeper.

The 55th minute of the game saw MC Alger scoring a goal as Abdulaziz Ammachi put the ball beyond an onrushing MFM FC goalkeeper.

After the equaliser, MFM FC took absolute control of the game but they were unable to crack the visitors defence open.

With less than seven minutes to wrap up the encounter, Bashiru surfaced from the middle of the park with an unexpected screamer to give his team a hard-earned victory over MC Alger.

MFM Win Lagos FA Cup

MFM FC on Sunday became the champions of Lagos FA Cup after they defeated Spartan FC by 3-1 at the Agege Township Stadium.

It was reported that the Olukoya boys successfully defended the FA Cup they won last year.

Chukwuma Onuwa scored the first goal for the champions on the 11th minute.

Spartan Fc responded in the 24th minute with an equaliser.

After the two teams resumed from the first half break, MFM’s efforts were rewarded with a goal from the penalty spot by captain Stanley Okorom in the 70 minutes.

Then MFM striker Sikiru Olatunbosun scored in the 83rd minute, t to put the game out of contention for their rivals.

MFM coach, Fidelis Ilechukwu said he was happy his team won the cup back to back.

He hopes the team will do better than last year, in the national campaign for the FA Cup.

“It’s good we are champions but we will like to surpass our last year’s campaign in the FA Cup. That should be the target now,” he said

 

 

 

Source: Nation

MFM Coach Boost to Maintain 100% Home Win

Mountain of Fire Miracles Ministries (MFM) FC head coach, Fidelis IIechukwu has said his side hope to keep their 100% home record intact against top-flight rivals Rivers United.

The Olukoya Boys are hosts of the Pride of Rivers in Wednesday’s top-flight rescheduled matchday 8 clash at the Agege Township Stadium.

IIechukwu said the clash against the Garden City side is crucial, as victory will help his side climb to the top-flight summit.

“The clash against Rivers United is usually going to the tough but will be tougher this time around coming on the heel of the opponents’ shocking ouster from the Caf Champions League.

“However, we are ready to contest the whole three points at stake in the clash against Rivers United.

“Our happiness is that Mountain of Fire Miracles Ministries (MFM) FC are getting stronger by the day in the top-flight with each match.

“Our main target is to maintain the 100% home record in the on-going Nigerian top-flight.

“We have the advantage to beat Rivers United to help us climb to the Nigerian top-flight summit.

“That’s why the match is quite important as a win will automatically takes us to the summit.

“We will win the encounter as we are determined to be top-flight number one team, at least, now.

“Of course, we will unleash top strikers, Stephen Odey and Sikiru Olatunbosun among others against Rivers United.

“I have told the players we must win for once to take over the leadership of the league,” said IIechukwu to supersport.com.

The Lagos outfit are second on the 20-team top-flight on 24 points, one behind league leaders Plateau United with a match in hand against champions, Enugu Rangers.

MFM FC Prosper As Pillars Secure Away Point

Lobi Stars 2-2 Kano Pillars

Kano Pillars remain in the top seven of the Nigeria Professional Football League, despite being held to a 2-2 draw by a stubbornly resilient Lobi Stars side.

The visitors at the Aper Aku Stadium were never subdued in the week six fixture.

Lobi Star started well and drew the curtain raiser through Anthony Okpotu’s spot-kick in the 16th minute.

The visitors could have been alarmed by conceding such an early goal, but there was time enough to regroup.

There was an instant response from Baba Ganaru’s men as the skillful Prince Aggrey
dribbled two defenders before pulling the trigger.

Lobi Stars continuously progressed to the edge of the Kano Pillars penalty area, only to then clutter up their play by moving the ball around looking for intricate passing angles for through balls.

There seemed an unwillingness to move the ball down the flanks and sling crosses into the penalty area, so Pillars stood firm and gained confidence and prominence with a series of counter-attacks that caused the home defence to reel.

One break up field eventually delivered, with Aggrey’s cross turned home for an own goal by Moses Bunde two minutes after the half hour mark. It was an awkward attempt to clear the ball.

Stars had spurned a couple of chances before then but they seldom broke beyond the Kano Pillars backline, which was sitting deep.

The visitors could hold firm to their game plan, since the onus was on Lobi Stars to try to win the game and counter-attacking opportunities would be left in the wake of that ambition.

Lobi Stars were stung, but that prompted an urgency that contributed to an equaliser in the second half. There were series of pressure on Kano Pillars and Raphael Ayagwa delivered the goal.

The game opened up in the final minutes, but neither side could capitalise.

Giwa FC 1-0 Sunshine Stars

Giwa FC were made to work hard to secure victory in their NPFL match against Sunshine Stars, having claimed a late 1-0 win at the Rwang Pam Stadium.

The best opening of the first half fell the way of Isiaka Olawale, who saw his effort cleared off the line by Kunle Odunlami.

The Jos Elephants looking to win in their week six outing, continued to enjoy the brighter spells of possession but were unable to find a way through in a tame first half.

With the game poised to in a draw, substitute Omotayo Adegbogun put the ball in the net five minutes into injury time.

Gbenga Ogunbote’s charges are now in 12th place with two wins and a draw from five matches, while the Owena Waves have two points from five games and are 19th in the 20-team table.

FC Ifeanyi Ubah 4-1 Ikorodu United

Ikorodu United suffered a humiliating 4-1 defeat to FC Ifeanyi Ubah at the Rojenny International Stadium.

The Anambra Warriors worsened the miseries of the beleaguered Oga Boys walloping them in the week six match.

Ten minutes into the tie, Nico Dao unleashed an unstoppable effort from the edge of the box and the hosts were ahead.

It was 2-0 soon after, when Dao headed home Alberico Barbosa Da Silva’s cross in the 18th minute.

The visitors halved the scoreline when Stephen Nwaiwu scored from a well taken free kick seven minutes after restart.

Okereke Maduabuchi restored the hosts’ lead with a deflected effort from close range.

Seka Pascal compounded the woes of Ikorodu United with a well struck penalty-kick late in the game.

MFM FC 3-1 El-Kanemi Warriors

MFM FC zoomed to the top of the Nigeria Professional Football League table when they defeated Elkanemi Warriors 3-1 at the Agege Stadium.

Goals from Stephen Odey, Julius Emiloju and Emmanuel Onuwa gave Fidelis Ikechukwu’s charges thethree points, as they moved up to first spot with 13 points from 6 matches whilst Warriors sit in 18th spot with three points from five outings.

After making a great run in the box, Odey scored the opener for the Olukoya Boys.

The Lagos-based side dominated the proceedings following their goal and kept Ladan Bosso’s side on the backfoot.

A number of great touches by MFM saw the visitors caught napping in the 47th minute and Emiloju applied the finishing touch from Ifeanyi Ifeanyi’s delivery.

In the 66th minute, Japhet Daniel reduced the deficit and gave Elkanemi Warriors the hope of snatching a draw.

MFM continued to show hunger and in a swift move, Onuwa made it three goals to one.

In the end Fidelis Ikechukwu’s boys walked away with the full three points.

Niger Tornadoes 3-2 Rivers United

Niger Tornadoes endured a late fightback from Rivers United to emerge victorious in an entertaining 3-2 victory over the visiting team.

In-form Ismail Gata drew the curtain raiser from a well taken free-kick in the 44th minute for his third goal of the season.

All efforts from Rivers United to turn the game around were thwarted by the home side, who hardly put a foot wrong.

Abdullahi Biffo’s wards extended their lead in the 58th minute through Gabriel Wassa after a dazzling display.

It was 3-0 moments later, as former Sharks forward Daniel Jackson capitalised on a defensive error to register his name on the score-sheet.

Daniel Isreal however reduced the tally to give the away side some level of hope, before they scored again in the 82nd minute through Guy Kuemian, after a goal-mouth scramble.

Akwa United 2-0 Plateau United

In a game between two teams of different ambitions, it was always going to be the hungrier team that ultimately grind out result they craved.

A brace by Friday Ubong secured a 2-0 victory for Akwa United at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium on Friday night.

From the blast of the whistle, the Promise Keepers took the fight to the visitors. The pressure paid off on the 28th minute.

Friday Ubong accepted a teasing cross from Michael Ibe Okoro and headed the ball beyond the goal.

However, Plateau United wasn’t going to lie there and get beaten. They also strung a few passes together, as they looked to get back in the encounter.

The hosts continue to search for a second goal and they were rewarded in the 78th minute when Ubong got on the end of a pass from Emeka Isaac to score his and Akwa’s second goal of the game.