Rivers United won the 2016 NPFL Super 4
Sunday Jan 22, 2017. 09:57
Rivers United coach Stanley Eguma has backed NPFL clubs to shine in this year’s CAF Champions League and Confederation Cup.
Champions Rangers and Rivers United will represent Nigeria in the more lucrative Champions League, while Wikki Tourists and Fc IfeanyiUbah feature in the Confederation Cup.
Enyimba were the last Nigerian club to win a continental crown 13 years ago as Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) clubs have generally underwhelmed internationally in recent years, but Eguma said he believes the trend can be bucked in 2017.
“It is still too early to definitely say whether or not Rivers United can win the CAF Champions League because we have still not hit optimum form with the NPFL season still in its early stages,” he said.
“None of the African clubs who have entered for both competitions (Champions League and Confederation Cup) can confidently say they know which team will win (the respective titles).
“However, I will not rule out Nigerian clubs because we have begun to build stronger teams now.
“The competitiveness of the NPFL is also helping our clubs and I am confident that Rivers United will surprise many on the continent.
“We are looking at performing the past feats of Enyimba (that won the CAF Champions League title in 2003 and 2004).
“If Enyimba, a Nigerian club could win the CAF Champions League title back-to-back, it is possible that Rivers United can do it as well.”
Eguma was a member of Enyimba’s coaching staff when the Aba club won the African title for the second time in 2004.