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NPFL: Rangers lose to Gombe United, adduce reasons

Abdul Maikaba, the Technical Adviser of Rangers International Football Club of Enugu, on Sunday blamed their 0-1 loss to hosts Gombe United on his players’ attitude.

Gombe United won the Match Day 37 fixture of the 2021/2022 Nigeria Professional Football League at the Pantami Stadium.

Speaking after the match, Maikaba said the hosts deserved their victory in view of his players’ attitude to the game, especially in the second half.

He said he expected his players to have controlled themselves no matter the nature of officiating in order to get the result, which would have brightened their chances.

He said: “My players lost their head, especially in the second half, they were collecting cards anyhow.

“No matter how poor the officiating is, I don’t think we should be behaving as such.

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“It is not good for football.

“I expected them to control themselves.

“That would have us result if we had kept our heads down.

“I am not happy with their behaviour actually.”

Maikaba said the game’s result meant they could no longer finish third in the league to qualify to represent Nigeria at a continental club competition.

He said: “The chance is almost zero now.

“But it’s football.

“I think we restrategise move ahead.”

On his part, Aliyu Zubairu, the Technical Adviser of Gombe United, described the match as “good” and “tough” considering the pedigree of visiting Rangers their coaching crew.

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Zubairu however said losing away to Rangers during the competition’s first round gave them the idea that his side needed to prepare well at home.

He added: “Because of this, I am a happy man today.”

He stated that his plan was to help his team finish well.

He said: “We work hard to secure an away point in our last game of the season.”

Also speaking, Abubakar Abubakar, the General Manager of Gombe United FC, said the season had been good for his team.

Abubakar said: I want to thank the players coaching crew for this feat.”

Abubakar added that winning the last home game was a gift to the club’s supporters the entire people of Gombe State.

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He said: “We are all celebrating because it has not been easy.”

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the only goal of the game was scored by Gombe United’s Ibrahim Yahaya in the 47th minute.

With the result, Gombe United now have 52 points from 37 matches played sit in seventh place on the league table.

Rangers International FC have 53 points from 37 matches now occupy the fifth position.

Gombe United’s last match of the season will be against champions Rivers United FC on Sunday, while Rangers will host Akwa United on the same day.

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