The home-based Eagles are billed to travel out of Kano to Cotonou, Benin Republic this Friday, as they finalise preparations for the first leg of their final qualifier for next year’s Championship of African Nations (CHAN) in Kenya.
Information on offer from the team’s camp in Kano reveals that the Eagles’ B-squad will make the trip by air to Lagos in the early hours of Friday, August 11, then connect Cotonou by road same day.
It was gathered that the coaching crew are still weighing the possibility of travelling with only 20 players from the total of 30 that were invited to camp last week, considering that only 18 would be eligible for the game on Sunday, August 13.
Eagles’ media officer, Toyin Ibitoye, while confirming the team’s travel plans in a telephone chat with SportsDay on Sunday afternoon, further disclosed that technical adviser, Gernot Rohr has already travelled out of Nigeria, but will meet up with the squad in Cotonou either on Friday or Saturday.
Ibitoye also informed SportsDay that only six players stayed behind in the team’s Tahir Hotel camp over the past weekend, while many others returned to their clubs for NPFL matches, but said the others are expected back by Monday.
With that in mind, the technical crew, led by Salisu Yusuf has gone ahead to fix another build-up match for the squad on Tuesday, with their opponents this time expected to be a Kano Selected 11 outfit.
“All the players are expected back, Monday evening at the latest, which would be in time for them to settle down and prepare for their next test match against a Kano selected side.
“The coaches have to line the team out against such teams, even as many people call them small scale opponents, simply because the league clubs, both NPFL and NNL, are all involved in matches every week and they are too busy to play tune-up matches against us for now,” said the erudite sports broadcaster.