Rivers United coach Stanley Eguma says his strikers’ wastefulness in front of goal was responsible for their 2-1 defeat at Futuro Kings of Equatorial Guinea on Saturday in the first leg of their CAF Confederation Cup preliminary round tie, describing the result as ‘unfortunate’.
Despite carving out lots of scoring chances in Mongomo in the first half, the hosts raced to a 2-0 lead before Godwin Aguda reduced the deficit for Eguma’s men from the spot to give The Pride of Rivers a crucial away goal ahead of the second leg in Port Harcourt this weekend.
Speaking on arrival in Port Harcourt on Sunday, Eguma stated that the inability of his strikers to convert their chances even affected them psychologically in the fixture.
“The players tried their best yesterday (Saturday), but the avalanche of goals that were missed were so much that it psychologically affected the team because within the space of 20 minutes, we should have scored like two goals,” he lamented. “In fact, before the end of the first half, we should have been three, four goals up.
“Those goals were just missed. The players were so wasteful. The attackers were so wasteful in front of goal, and in a match of this magnitude, you don’t lose scoring opportunities.”
Obviously not pleased with the outcome of the encounter, Eguma, whose side won the Gov. Wike preseason Tournament and also reached the semi-finals of the Dapo Abiodun competition, says the result does not reflect their preparation.
“Well, actually, it was unfortunate – the result we got yesterday (Saturday),” he said.
“We had prepared very well for this game. Given the little time frame at our disposal, we trained and participated in some tournaments, scoring high goals after performing well.
“But I think the result of our game yesterday (Saturday) didn’t reflect our preparation.”
Rivers United, who reached the group stages of the competition in 2017, are expected to advance to the first round despite the 2-1 loss to Futuro Kings.