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CAF Confederation Cup

Caf Confederation Cup: Winning and scoring two goals in Conakry is achievable - Bala

4:33 PM GMT+4 21/08/2019
Abubakar-Bala-Niger-Tornadoes
The Ikon Allah Boys manager tells Goal his team is better prepared for their away test

Niger Tornadoes coach Abubakar Bala believes his team will get the required result to progress to the next phase of the Caf Confederation Cup on Friday when they take on Santoba in the second leg of their preliminary round tie.

Tornadoes lost 2-1 at home in the first leg played at Ahmadu Bello Stadium, Kaduna and would now need not to just win away but also to score at least two goals in Conakry.

The manager of the Ikon Allah Boys believes his team can achieve this difficult task.

“Winning and scoring two goals in Conakry is very achievable against the Santoba team I saw in Kaduna,” coach Bala told Goal in an exclusive interview. 

“In that first leg, Santoba were lucky, they had two chances and they used it.

“In fact, we had far more chances than them right from the first half but we did not utilise them.

“Maybe because some of the players were playing together for the first time but now there is an improved understanding so I expect something better.”

The Ikon Allah Boys left Nigeria for Conakry on Tuesday after playing two friendly games against Lagos-based teams 36 Lions and Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) side MFM.

 

While the 2-1 loss to 36 Lions and the 2-2 draw against MFM do not necessarily inspire confidence, coach Bala is fulfilled the games have met the purposes they were originally meant for.

“We have organised the two friendly games so that the players can blend together, we gathered most of these players barely two-three weeks before our first leg tie, that is why we believe these friendly matches will give them an avenue to blend together and understand each other individually and understand the team’s style of play,” the Tornadoes coach continued.

“The boys have improved and the understanding is better but we still have more work to do in terms of our off the ball reaction,” coach Bala added.

If Tornadoes are able to navigate past Santoba they would take on Ivorian club San Pedro who were given a bye in the preliminary round.