Akwa United's Gabriel Wassa says his side are aiming to avoid an upset against Heartland in Thursday's rescheduled league fixture at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium.
The Promise Keepers had edged past Al-Ittihad with a 3-2 win on penalties after a 1-1 on aggregate to reach the playoffs stage of this year's Caf Confederation Cup.
And the former Rivers United man is delighted over their progress in the Caf competition and has backed his side subdue Ransom Madu's men in the quest to surge up the table.
"We are eagerly looking forward to the match against Heartland on Thursday," Wassa told Goal.
"It is really an important game for us because we believe it is an opportunity for us to close the gap between us and the team at the top (Lobi Stars).
"We are glad that we scaled through to the next phase of the Caf Confederation Cup and before the next game, we are hoping to ensure we get good results in the league.
"That's the main reason why we are planning to crush them (Heartland) in Uyo. We are not ready to joke about any game this season either the league or Caf matches.
"It has been tough for us coping with the two competitions, especially the traveling stress we always have but I think we have a big team and everyone want to play.
"Even though we are prepared to carry the day, I expect a difficult match against Heartland but I can assure that we have the plan to do everything to grind out a victory."
A home triumph over Heartland could take Akwa United to second on the Nigeria Professional Football League log and they would still have two games in hand.