Football

Rivers United eager to beat Young Africans again, says Eguma

Team to write CAF over alleged attack by Tanzanian fans

Rivers United FC Coach, Stanley Eguma, has promised to ensure his players do not allow the one goal away victory over Young Africans of Tanzania get into their heads in the reverse fixture of their CAF Champions League preliminary tie this weekend in Port Harcourt.

Rivers United defeated Young Africans 1-0 in Kampala on Sunday and will host the return leg in Port Harcourt this weekend.

Eguma, who said the away victory would motivate his team to go for another win at home, promised: “We will play our home game as if our lives depend on it. The players will be 100 percent focused to avoid complacency in the return leg.”

The Rivers United contingent arrived in Lagos on Tuesday evening from Tanzania. They were expected to depart for Port Harcourt on Wednesday to continue preparation to host Young Africans in the reverse fixture of the CAF Champions League game on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the club’s management has disclosed plans to protest to CAF over an alleged attack by fans of Young Africans in Tanzania.

According to the club’s sole administrator, Chris Green, the petition will ensure that CAF takes deliberate measures to punish Young Africans to deter other African teams from brutalising their guests during and after matches.

Narrating Rivers United’s ordeal in Tanzania, Green said, “The treatment we got was embarrassing.

“After taking all the COVID-19 tests in Nigeria and when we arrived in Tanzania, which all was negative, we were surprised that three hours before the game, Rivers United team doctor came to inform me that another COVID-19 test result was out and that six people in our team, including the doctor, himself, first choice goalkeeper and three key players came out positive.

“We had to move on and make use of the players on ground because the game must be played before any complain.

“On arriving at the stadium with our Tanzanian security escorts on match day, they did not allow the team to enter the stadium. It took some intervention for the team to gain access to the dressing room, but our coach, who first got access to the dressing room, collapsed after perceiving a substance.

“As we were trying to revive him, we heard that Rivers United’s media officer was beaten by a stadium guard at the entrance of the stadium. We had to seek medical attention from a Tanzanian nurse to revive the media officer, who was unconscious.

“When the game ended, we were harassed and delayed from coming out of the stadium. Even when we got out of the stadium, we could not find the security escorts that brought us to the arena. We had to find our way to the hotel.”

He revealed that Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) President, Amaju Pinnick, was always in contact with Rivers United, adding, “Pinnick called the FA president of Tanzania, who told us that they were not surprised with Young Africans’ approach as they are known for hostilities.”

Green disclosed that Rivers United would protest to CAF through NFF, adding, “videos and pictures are available as evidence.”

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