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2018 CAF Confederation Cup: Akwa United Host Hawks FC

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Akwa United FC will host Hawks FC of Gambia in a 2018 CAF Confederation Cup preliminary round first leg tie at Godswill Akpabio International Stadium

Uwem Uko

Akwa United FC will host Hawks FC of Gambia in a 2018 CAF Confederation Cup preliminary round first leg tie at Godswill Akpabio International Stadium on Friday, February 9 by 4pm.

The return leg is slated for Wednesday, February 21 at the Independence Stadium in Bakau.

The Banjul club is expected to arrive Lagos on Tuesday night, before flying to Uyo on Wednesday, February 7 ahead of the Sunday clash, with a 27-man delegation comprising eighteen players and nine officials.

The match will be officiated by FIFA-badged Sierraleonian referee Dauda Williams and will be assisted by his fellow countrymen, Ibrahim Bah and Aliou Sandy, while Raymond Coker has been designated the fourth official of the encounter.

The match will be commissioned by Mawule Lawson from Togo.

RELATED: Akwa United Vs Hawks FC: How to Get a Ticket for the Continental Clash

Akwa United sit atop the 2017/2018 Nigeria Professional Footbal League with 16 points in the opening seven games, winning five – including a 2-1 away win to Niger Tornadoes in Lokoja, drew one and lost just a game against newcomers Go Round FC in Omoku.

Akwa’s opponent, Hawks FC are placed 8th in a 12-team GFA League, with 11 points from nine games. The Sang Ndong tutored side recently bounced back from their poor run of form with two wins and a draw in their last three GFA League games.

The Promise Keepers will be competing for the second time in the CAF Confederation Cup, after a failed quest in 2016, where they crashed out at the preliminary stage, after losing 5-6 to Vita Club de Mokanda of Congo on penalties in a second leg tie played at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium on Sunday, February 27, 2016.

Fastav Zlin’s forward, Ubong Ekpai who was making a return to the club from Kano Pillars, scored a 35th minute goal at Stade Municipal in Pointe Noire on Saturday, February 13, 2016, to give the Maurice Cooreman led side a comfortable away win.

 

 

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Chelsea Vs Barcelona: Build-up, Line-up and Stats

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It’s another big night in Europe. English teams have been fantastic so far in the Champions League. We bring to you all the essentials as former Champions Chelsea and Barcelona look set to write a new chapter in their European rivalry. Will history count at the Bridge?

This encounter will be tighter than most have predicted. Drawing against the reigning English Champions is tough said Valverde, they have their own style of play with quality players underrating them will be dangerous for us.

Chelsea have had the upper hand in past meetings won 4, drawn 5 and lost 3. Lionel Messi holds a scoring jinx against the Blues considering he’s yet to score in eight meetings. Chelsea boast one of the best defense in England and beating Barcelona will help open a new chapter of their season given their domestic struggle. Antonio Conte hinted on his side’s readiness to suffer without the ball due to his opponent style of keeping the ball and dominating possession. “If we win the ball we try to do our thing,” he said.

Barcelona have been spectacular under Ernesto Valverde’s surveillance having remained unbeaten in La LIGA with seven points clear at the summit and were unbeaten in the group stages of the Champions League. Much will depend on Lionel Messi, if he can break his curious jinx against Chelsea tonight. He’s the best in the world can pop up any moment difficult to tame – keep the Argentinian quiet and Conte’s side have more than a chance.

 

Possible Line-ups

Chelsea: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Cahill; Moses, Kanté, Fàbregas, Alonso; Hazard, Pedro; Morata

Out : Barkley (hamstring), David Luiz (unspecified), Bakayoko (unspecified)

Added to squad since group stage: Barkley, Giroud, Emerson

 

Barcelona : Ter Stegen; Sergi Roberto, Piqué, Umtiti, Jordi Alba; Busquets, Paulinho, Rakitić; Iniesta, Messi, Suárez

Out : Semedo (suspended), Vermaelen (muscular problem)

Added to squad since group stage: Arnaiz, Costas, Mina

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Former Enyimba Captain, Chinedu Udoji Dies in Ghastly Motor Accident

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Chinedu Udoji, former Enyimba captain and until his demise a Kano Pillars utility player, was this morning confirmed dead by the media officer of the team, Malikawa Garu  who told Vanguard on phone that the accident occurred Sunday night along Club road by Independent way in  Kano metropolis.

 

Football fans in Africa have been mourning the sudden demise of the Kano Pillars defender who featured for Kano Pillars in Sunday’s crunch tie against his former employers which ended 1-1.

He lost his life after he was involved in a gory motor accident on his way home.

Former Club Enyimba  sent their condolence to the family of the hard working defender via twitter.

 

Heartland Football Club were not left out among the NPFL teams who commiserated the player’s demise describing him as “calm and coordinated.

 

 

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Peter Utaka Joins Danish Second Division Side Velke Boldklub

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Velke Boldklub announced the signing of former Super Eagles Striker Peter Utaka on a four- month deal. The contract will run till June 30th, 2018

The 34 years old was on loan to FC Tokyo from Sanfreece Hiroshima. Utaka  scored four goals in his first three matches for the J1 League Club despite coming in as a substitute in all matches. He scored 10 goals in 33 appearance  before returning to parent club Sanfreece  Hiroshima to see off his contract. He was a free agent before joining  the Danish outfit.

Velke sit at the top of the second Division with 38 points.

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MFM Host League Leaders Akwa United

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Mountain of Fire and Miracle Ministries FC face a tough task against League leaders  Akwa United who are unbeaten in their last three games in the NPFL.

The Lagos based club finished in the second position in the NPFL last season but have struggled to replicate that form in the current campaign and are currently 17th on the table.

Both teams return to domestic business after CAF assignment with contrasting results. Akwa lost at home 1-2 to visiting Hawks of Gambia in a CAF Confederation Cup Preliminary round match whilst MFM earned a vital point away from home after playing out a thrilling 1-1 against Real Bamako of Mali in a CAF Champions League clash.

The Promise Keepers will be hoping to push CAF disappointment aside when they battle MFM much later in the day in the rescheduled  fixture in a bit to maintain their impressive record this season.

Meanwhile, MFM will move out relegation zone with a win. Expect a massive cracker.

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