Enugu Rangers will bank on a blend of youth and experience as they take on ASC Kara in the CAF Confederation Cup playoff round this weekend in Lome.
Ikechukwu Ibenegbu, Uche John and Ugwu Uwadiegwu are some of the more experienced players in the team who have played at the top flight and in the CAF Champions League and Confederation Cup before.
But the team will also have some youthful energy with the likes of Tony Shimaga, Ibrahim Olawoyin, Eziekwe Chinonso and Agu Kenechukwu to achieve their set target against such players expected to be lined up by the Togolese.
Coach of Enugu Rangers, Ben Ugwu is optimistic his side can do the business in Lome.
“We know that we are going there to battle. It is a battle and we must succeed. They are going to give us a very good fight and we are prepared for them. We will give them a fight,” Ugwu said.
ASC Kara provided 7 players for the Togolese National Team that eliminated Nigeria from next year’s Championship for African Nations, CHAN, but Ugwu downplays that as a cause for concern.
“Regarding their players in the national team, we also had two, even though they had seven. Rangers could have as well provided ten players in the CHAN team but you know this is Nigeria and you cannot force your players on the team.”
Rangers finished 3rd in Group B of last season’ competition after going eight matches without a loss in both preliminary and knock out rounds.
Surpassing their feat of last season is the target for the team, going further than they achieved last term is a target that every member of the team has set.
Ugwu, who will be tackling a Togolese opposition for the fourth time in his career this weekend.
“This is my fourth time of going to Togo to play. I went with Rangers as a player and we won 1-0.
“I also went there with the Super Eagles and it ended in a draw then I went with BCC Lions and we won. This will be my first time as a coach and I believe that by the special grace of God, I will come out victorious.”
Rangers and Enyimba are the only Nigerian clubs left in Africa. Enyimba play TS Galaxy on Sunday in Aba.