Head coach of Rangers International Benedict Ugwu says The Flying Antelopes are not scared of their Egyptian opponents in this season’s CAF Confederation Cup group stage, assuring fans of the Enugu-based side of qualification to the knockout phase of the competition.
The 2018 Aiteo Cup winners, were on Tuesday drawn to face Egyptian sides Pyramids FC and Al Masry as well as Mauritanian champions Nouadibhou in a potentially difficult Group A of Africa’s second-tier club competition.
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Reacting to the draw, the former Nigeria international defender, fondly called Surugede in his playing days, said he is confident Rangers will advance from the group.
“First of all, we thank God that we qualified for the group stage, and that’s the main thing,” Ugwu said. “If you qualify for the group stage, you are ready to face any team.
“As Rangers is standing now, they are not afraid of any team. We know that Northern Africans are good sides, but we will train towards the competition.
“I’m assuring all our teeming supporters that we will not disappoint them; that we will go beyond what we have done before in this group stage.”
The 7-time Nigerian league champions reached the grouped stage of the competition earlier this year (last season) under former coach Gbenga Ogunbote, but Ugwu is now banking on divine intervention this time to go all the way.
“As a matter of fact, we are a good side. We are preparing for the games. Before you go to get the cup, you have to go through these qualifications. So, I’m not sure that we are afraid of any team being there,” he stated.
“Our target this year is to touch that cup, and with God on our side, we know (it will happen) because my team; Rangers, we believe in God so much that God will see us through.”
Rangers will kick start the group stage of the competition with a home tie against Pyramids on 1 December 2019, before travelling to Cairo for a date with Egyptian side Al-Masry on December 8 for a Match Day 2 encounter.
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