Enyimba coach Finidi George has expressed huge satisfaction with the way his team played in their 3-0 thrashing of Senegalese side Diambars in Aba on Sunday.
Three well-taken goals from forwards Tosin Omoyele in the first minute, Victor Mbaoma in the 31st minute and substitute Samuel Kalu at the death, handed the two-time African champions a comfortable victory and passage to the playoffs stage of the 2020/21 CAF Confederation Cup at the expense of Diambars, who had Bacary Sane sent off late on.
The win sealed a 4-0 aggregate victory for Enyimba, who defeated the former Senegalese champions 1-0 in the reverse fixture a week earlier.
Playing in only their second competitive game since he took over the reins at the Aba side, the former Super Eagles winger said, though his game plan was to score early, he never expected it to happen in the first minute when Omoyele converted from close range off Mbaoma’s centre.
“In the first instance, we knew they don’t have anything to lose because they lost at home, they were going to give a fight,” the 50-year-old former Real Mallorca youth team coach said in a post-match presser. “We knew that.
“We were thinking if we play with two strikers, it might help us to have an early goal, and that was what happened. We did not anticipate that early goal, but we just felt if we play with two strikers, we might have that opportunity to score in the first half.
“And after that, they gained possession, which they do very, very well. But we kept our cool.
“For me, I’m happy with the way we played, not just the three goals we scored…the performance, the way we defended together, the way we attacked together. Sometimes we lose the ball, sometimes there are mistakes, but I must commend the boys for the hard work.
“When you play a team that keeps possession, you have to fight for every ball, every possession to win it back. And that is draining. You could see at the end of the game, the players were tired, which I understand, but they are happy as well because of the victory.”
The former Ajax and Real Betis winger is, however, hopeful of an improved performance from his Enyimba side when the 2021/22 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) season gets underway.
“So, I’m pleased with the performance, not just the goals,” he reiterated. “So, we’ll look at how we can be better by the time the league starts.
“This is the second official game that we have played. So, I must commend the boys for a great effort.”