All eyes will be at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Stadium, Bauchi, as Wikki Tourists host Enugu Rangers in top-of-the-table clash on Sunday. The match is one of the week 25 fixtures of the ongoing season and it will bring with it all the expectations from such high-profile encounter. Wikki are entering into the match knowing that a loss will place Rangers ahead of the Bauchi State side. Rangers will draw strength from Wikki’s slump at the relegation-battlers, Plateau United, last Sunday.
The Enugu based team was stressed to the limit before beating Warri Wolves at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium, Enuguon Friday. The result catapulted them to the second position after Rivers United, which would have engaged relegated Giwa FC, observed rest. Wikki have lost only once in their last seven matches and will fancy their chances against Rangers, especially if striker Godwin Obaje hit form and combines very well with the likesof Idris Mohammed and others in the middle. This is one match that holds so much for both sides and Rangers will bank on the forms of strikers like Obinna Nwobodo and Godwin Aguda to wreck the home side. The Flying Antelopes have won only four matches in their last ten matches, lost three and drew three. The former champions have demonstrated everything but invincibility on away turf, with the only remarkable away win in previous matches being the hard fought 2-1 victory over Heartland in Owerri earlier in the month. Speaking ahead of the match, Ozor Paul Chibuzor, general manager of Rangers, said they desire that the clash be beamed live to Nigerians, saying the reverse fixture in Enugu was on television. “Our home (game) against Wikki in the first round was live on television and I don’t see why the reverse game should not be on TV. If the number One team (in the league) and the number two team are playing, it should be a live game on television. We will like a live game.” He expressed the hope that Rangers are in Bauchi for the three points, which will return them to the summit of the league. “We are in Bauchi to pick the three points so that we will return to the top of the table.” Meanwhile, Abdul Maikaba, Wikki coach, who is favoured for the assistant coaching position of the Super Eagles, while speaking to Independent, said that there was no special training for Rangers, urging his players to give their best as always. “We are not preparing specially for this match. We always prepared for matches and this match is just one of them. All I want is for the players to give their best as always,” he said.