Plateau United To Protest CAF Champions League Against Simba FC
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Nigeeia Professional Football League, NPFL champions, Plateau United is set to appeal their first round CAF Champions League elimination against Simba SC following what they called ‘unsportsmanship’ behaviour meted against them in the return leg of their encounter on Sunday, Bestchoicesports.com.ng can repoet
Coach of the side, Abdul Maikaba believes his team was cheated in Tanzania after they played out a goalless draw in the first round second leg match in Sunday
Coach Maikaba accused Simba SC of Tanzania of poor sportsmanship, which he believes is responsible for his team’s early exit from the CAF Champions League.
Plateau United held the hosts to a goalless draw in Dar-Es-Salaam but losing 1-0 in the first leg in Jos showed them the way of the tournament in the preliminary round.
In an exclusive interview with Channels Sports, Coach Maikaba praised his team for making improvements and blamed the hosts for going against rules of fair play and sportsmanship to advance in the competition.
With a tone exuding confidence, Coach Abdul Maikaba told Channels Sports that the sole goal of Plateau was to achieve victory in Tanzania and advance to the next round of the CAF Champions League.
According to him, the boys were disappointed after the loss in Jos and were charged to make amends by giving all they had in the second leg match.
“Actually our performance was far better than what we played at home because, with the experience of the game we played in Jos, we understood our opponent more and planned our strategy very well,” the 55-year-old gaffer explained.
“If not for the pranks played by Simba, they played a lot of pranks outside the game to ensure they frustrate us.’’
Struggling to express his disappointment, Coach Maikaba said Simba’s antics can destroy the reputation of the competition.
“It got to an extent where they tried to stop some of our players entry into their country. They kept wasting our time at the airport and they pinpoint two players, Sunday Adetunji and Abubakar Ibrahim because they performed well in Jos, they didn’t want them to be part of the game, including our goalkeeper,” Maikaba stated.
“When we arrived at our hotel, we met some medical officials who said we have to undergo COVID-19 tests. We got in late, needed to train for an hour which was the time they gave us to use the match venue, yet they were insisting we have the tests.
“We asked that they come back 30 minutes so we train but they refused and informed us they will return in 10 minutes but they didn’t return until 2 hours later. So, we left them and went on with our training. They eventually returned, did the tests and held on to it till we concluded our warm-up to the match.”
He further narrated that “Five minutes to kick-off, the match commissioner informed us that five of our players tested positive to COVID-19. The information shocked us, we knew it was their plan to frustrate and intimidate us. We told them we won’t play the match because the result is coming late.”
“Later, the catch commissioner returned with a different list that had two players, Sunday Adetunji, Abubakar Ibrahim who were their main targets, our general manager, my chief coach and one other official,” Coach Maikaba told Channels Sports.
Sunday Adetunji joined Plateau United in September this year following his return to Nigeria after a short-lived spell at Czech Republic side FK Pribram B.
Plateau United’s Abubakar Ibrahim in the dressing room before the encounter.
Coach Maikaba described his move to the Jos-based team as fantastic and was banking on him to make a difference in Dar-es-salaam.
“Sunday Adetunji and the right-back, Abubakar Ibrahim were part of the starting eleven for the match, we had to replace them three minutes to the commencement of the game,” he added.
The coach noted that Adetunji’s absence was a huge blow to the ambition of his team.
“Right now we are at a different hospital, we want to do the test again with all those affected because 24 hours before we left Nigeria, the entire team tested negative to COVID-19. It is a shock to us that some became positive in Tanzania, less than 48 hours. If our verification