Despite failing to win at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium on Saturday evening against former two-time Champions of the CAF Confederation’s Cup, Renaissance Sportive de Berkane of Morocco, the Head Coach of Bendel Insurance FC of Benin, Monday Odigie believes fans and supporters should appreciate the performance of the team and stay positive about the team’s hope of advancing to the group stage of the competition.
In a post-match interview with journalists after the first leg of the second preliminary round match of the CAF Confederation’s Cup against RS Berkane, the coach spoke quite passionately about his team’s performance, stating, that his team played against the best team in the competition at the moment and performed well, but for some mistakes at the back which cost his team victory on the day, with the Moroccans coming back twice to level scores against the Benin Arsenals.
According to him, “We’ll go back and try to correct our mistakes and try to fight for the second game when we go to Morocco. This is the African Champions competition, you don’t expect things to come easy.”
“The result today is not a good one for us, but then we need to appreciate the performance. It’s not about the result but about the performance. Football is about participation, it’s not all about winning. We want to remain in the tournament, so we go and fight for the game, if the result doesn’t go well, we take it, and go back and start again next time. We just played against RS Berkane, a Moroccan team that was champions of this competition last year, so I think the team should be appreciated.”
On whether we should expect a turnaround in the second leg as it happened against ASO Chlef, the tactician replied that the performance of the team should be appreciated, stating that whether home or away if you don’t play well, you’re bound to lose.
“It’s not about going to Morocco and getting the result. It’s something that should give everyone joy that the team is playing on the continent, and we’re going to try and defend the pride of the State and the country.
It would be recalled that RS Berkane won the CAF Confederation’s Cup in 2020 and 2022, defeating Pyramid of Egypt and Orlando Pirates of South Africa respectively in both finals. The orange boys also emerged CAF Super Cup winners in 2022 defeating fellow Moroccan outfit Wydad Athletic Club 2-0.
Meanwhile, Bendel Insurance FC of Benin and Rivers United FC of Port Harcourt are the only two Nigeria teams left in the continent, as Enyimba FC and Remo Stars FC crashed out in the first preliminary round of the CAF Champions League.