Enyimba manager, Finidi George, has shared his thoughts on his team’s prospects as they prepare to face Gombe United in their opening fixture of the 2023-24 Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) season, Soccernet.ng reports.
The Aba-based club clinched their ninth NPFL championship title in the previous 2022-23 season. As they kickstart the new season against Gombe United on Sunday, the former Ajax star expressed his confidence and stated that his team won’t be burdened by the defending champions’ tag.
In their recent encounters, Enyimba has enjoyed success against Gombe United, including a 5-0 victory in May and a 2-1 win at the Gombe Township Stadium in February.
Despite these achievements, George emphasized that his team would stick to their winning strategies from the previous season and not succumb to pressure.
“We are coming into the season as defending champions, but we won’t allow that to put us under any pressure,” George said. “This is a long season that will have good moments and difficult ones, but whatever the case, we must stick to our ideologies. That is what will give us an identity and give us a chance.”
George acknowledged the high expectations of fans but expressed confidence in his players’ abilities to deliver. He emphasized the importance of maintaining a positive approach, just as they did during their successful away games last season.
Regarding the challenge of facing Gombe United at their home ground, George recognized the difficulty of the opposition, especially with the passionate home crowd support. However, he remained optimistic that his team would seize their opportunities and secure a favourable result.
“Gombe United have usually been a difficult opposition, especially when playing against them in Gombe. They have a good crowd of supporters behind them, making them want to give everything. But we will also have our chances,” George noted.
The upcoming match between Enyimba and Gombe United promises an exciting encounter, with both teams eager to perform well.
Enyimba aims to build on its previous successful run against Gombe Stars, while Gombe United seeks to bounce back from a loss in their opening game against Sporting Lagos.