‘Sheriff stunned Real Madrid’ – Bayelsa United’s Shaibu says CS Sfaxien are beatable in Caf Confederation Cup

John Shaibu, Bayelsa United
Shina Oludare
Inspired by the Moldovans’ defeat of Los Blancos in the Champions League, the goalkeeper claims his team can shock the Tunisian giants

John Shaibu claims Bayelsa United can defeat CS Sfaxien to boost their chances of qualifying for the play-off round of the Caf Confederation Cup.

The Nigeria National League side secured a 4-2 win over Guinea’s AS Ashanti Golden Boys in the first round to set up a date with the Tunisian Ligue Professionnelle 1 giants.

Depreye Tebowe’s men host the first leg at the Yenagoa Township Stadium before heading to the Stade Taieb Mhiri Sfax for the reverse fixture.

Notwithstanding the Juventus of the Arabs’ intimidating achievements in Africa – that saw them lift the Confederation Cup on three occasions – the former Sunshine Stars and Abia Warriors goalkeeper is bullish about his team’s chances.

“We are in the right frame of mind going into Sunday’s game against CS Sfaxien and with God on our side, we will get the job done,” Shaibu told Goal.

“At this stage, we are not bothered by whoever we face because our confidence level increased massively after we scaled Ashanti Golden Boys’ hurdles.

“We know the quality in the Tunisians squad, but we are unmoved. It’s a game of eleven players against eleven and trust me, we will play as if our lives depend on it towards making the second leg a mere formality.

“It is okay for us to be called underdogs but I hope you recall that Sheriff stunned Real Madrid in the Uefa Champions League. We are drawing inspiration from that and we hope to send them home empty-handed.

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“They don’t know us but we know them so well, so the pressure is on them and that is a very big advantage for us.

“Nigerians should keep supporting us and never stop praying for us as we want to make everyone proud.”

Bayelsa United won the 2021 Aiteo Cup after defeating NPFL side Nasarawa United via a penalty shoot-out following a 2-2 draw after extra-time.

Aside from becoming the first team from Nigeria’s second division to lift the prestigious cup since Dolphins FC's feat 20 years ago, the Yenagoa-based outfit picked a ticket to represent the West African nation alongside two-time African kings Enyimba.