Nigeria’s sole campaigner in the CAF Champions League, Enyimba International’s hopes of continental glory have been dimmed following a 3-0 loss in their first-leg play-off tie against Al Al Merriekh yesterday.
Enyimba began the game on a poor note as they conceded the first goal in the sixth minute of the game against the highly-technical Al Merikh side.
While Enyimba were trying hard to equalise in the first half, Al Merriekh launched a counter-attack and Saif Terry who scored the first goal was on hand to double the lead for the home team.
In the second half, Enyimba chased the game, but against the run of play the home team increased their lead in the closing minutes of this encounter with a glancing header from inside the six-yard box.
In the same vein, Rivers United have given the country some hope of continental glory following a 2-0 away win over South Africa’s Bloemfontein Celtic in the first leg of the first round of the CAF Confederation Cup yesterday.
The ‘Pride of Rivers’ who barely squeezed into this stage of the competition via a penalty shootout win over Futuro Kings of Equatorial Guinea were determined not to let Nigerians down.
In the 71st minute, Godwin Aguda broke the deadlock while in the 83rd minute, Fortune Omoniwari put the game beyond their host and clinch onto a vital victory.
Unlike the CAF Champions League where Enyimba are two-time champions, no Nigerian team has ever won the CAF Confederation Cup.
The second leg for Enyimba and Rivers United will be played in January in Aba and Port Harcourt respectively.