By Paul Erewuba
Bottom-placed League Champions, Enugu Rangers will attempt to swim out of relegation waters when they confront their Eastern rivals Enyimba today in a week 17 NPFL match at the UJ Esuene Stadium, Calabar.
The Enugu Antelopes are 20th on the table with 13 points after playing 13 games, while the People’s Elephant are 8th on the log with 22 points after playing 16 games.
This is the first time this season that both sides will be clashing in a competitive game, but Enyimba coach, Gbenga Ogunbote said it would climax their four-week run of tough clashes against the nation’s top four continental teams.
It would be recalled that Enyimba against Rangers is similar to Shooting Stars against Stationery Stores, Shooting against then Leventis United, Abiola Babes etc.
Speaking ahead of the encounter, Ogunbote retorted: “It will be a tough match but we are focusing on getting all the three points.”
Continuing, he said, “You call it oriental battle which means both teams know each other inside out.
“It then means the game will not follow form guide, but I hope we win.”
Ogunbote is in his first season at Enyimba. And he is overseeing the two-time African Champions for the first time in an oriental clash.
He says: “Yes, it is my first season here, but I know local derbies are the same every where.
“So, if you ask me, it has been a month of tough games, and we expect similar tough game against Rangers given their high profile in Nigeria and African football.”
Rangers are current title holders, but are down the bottom side of the log.