CAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Rangers, Rivers United advance

CAF CHAMPIONS LEAGUE: Rangers, Rivers United advance
Nana Bonsu - Rangers Ghanaian goalkeeper

by Staff Reporter

Sunday Feb 19, 2017. 21:26

Rangers Sunday eliminated JS Saoura of Algeria and Rivers United saw off AS Real Bamako from Mali to advance to the first round of the CAF Champions League.

Rangers were held to a goalless draw and thus qualified to the next round on the away goals’ rule after they played out a 1-1 draw in Algeria a week ago.

They will now face Zamalek of Egypt.

In Port Harcourt, Rivers United smashed past Real Bamako 4-0.

Bernard Ovoke and Esosa Igbinoba both scored twice on either half of the pulsating match as Rivers United powered past the Malians at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium in Port Harcourt.

The Nigerian side will now meet Al-Merriekh of Sudan in the next round of the competition.

Ovoke converted a spot kick in the 26th minute and added a second in the 59th minute after Esosa Igbinoba had doubled the Pride of Rivers in the 56th minute.

He was to grab his own brace on the night in the 79th minute as Rivers United cruised to an emphatic 4-0 win over their fellow West African rivals.

The Nigerian side dominated play from start to finish despite initial resistance from the coach Pascal Pons charges whose deft touches and organisation.

Both teams adopted the 4-3-3 approach but the visitors were overwhelmed by the experience, composure and confidence of the Nigerian side.

The huge scoreline did not remove any shine from the visitors whose flair for the French football time and again put the home side backline under pressure, especially Aoumbua  Aboubalaz whose dazzling dribbles constituted a threat for the defence of the Nigerians marshalled by Captain Festus Austine and Gabriel Olalekan.

By Olie Otuchelu in Enugu, Sab Osuji in Port Harcourt

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