After being drawn bye in the last phase, defending champions of the Federation Cup, Heartland FC of Owerri, return to the trenches today as they try to defend the title won in Lagos, last year.
The Naze Millionaires are billed to face Unicem of Calabar today in Aba, and according to defender and team skipper Chinedu Efugh, after surviving the scare of the state Federation Cup campaign, it will be unwise to underrate any team in the competition.
“The Federation Cup is always full of surprises, so we have to be careful with any team we are playing against. This is our only hope for a silver ware so we have to do our very best not to miss it,” he added.
Surprisingly, Heartland have recorded just one win in their last six matches, a situation they have blamed on injury of some key players.
In some other interesting fixtures, two NPL teams, Lobi Stars of Markurdi and Niger Tornadoes will tango in Bauchi.
Lobi Stars were one of the biggest winners in the last round, ousting Flash Flamingos with an emphatic 4 – 1 win.
Meanwhile, Lagos-based Fame Academy will seek to continue their giant killing run as they lay ambush for Gombe United in Lokoja. Fame Academy caused the biggest upset in the Round of 60 as they sent former Champions, Shooting Stars, out of the competition.
For NPL table toppers, Enugu Rangers who are seeking a double this season, displacing NNL side JUTH FC at the Kastina-Ala Stadium is the next target as they strive to break their 29 years of cup jinx.
Sixteen teams will qualify from this round of matches where they will be grouped into zones. The final game is fixed for July 29 at the Teslim Balogun Stadium in Lagos.
Filed Under: Football