Monday Odigie, the Head Coach of Bendel Insurance, holds the belief that football’s essence lies in participation, rather than consistently clinching victories and as such, has urged Nigerians to appreciate their CAF Confederation Cup’s game on Saturday.
In their recent clash at the Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin, Bendel Insurance faced off against RS Berkane from Morocco, resulting in a thrilling 2-2 draw during the CAF Confederations Cup preliminary rounds.
The match witnessed an impressive turnout of devoted fans.
The initial spark was provided by Bendel Insurance, with Imade Osarenkhoe delivering a powerful strike just two minutes before the half-hour mark, sparking jubilation among the supporters.
Nevertheless, the reigning CAF Confederations Cup champions quickly leveled the playing field with a Limaloui strike in the 42nd minute.
At halftime, the score stood at 1-1, prompting both coaches to contemplate tactical adjustments for the second half.
Insurance, however, managed to seize the lead once more, courtesy of defender Paul Obata’s goal.
In a dramatic turn of events, the visitors equalized just before stoppage time. Despite mounting pressure from Insurance, the visitors maintained their resolute defense.
Coach Odigie, reacting to the game’s outcome, emphasized the importance of his team’s participation in the tournament.
He asserted that their performance against the champions should be appreciated, highlighting that Bendel Insurance played against the Champions.
“Football is all about participating, it’s not about winning. We played against the champions, people should appreciate the performance,” he told the media after the game.
Looking ahead, RS Berkane will host Bendel Insurance in Morocco for the reverse fixture next weekend.
A goalless draw will surely not be enough for the Nigerian team to advance to the next rounds.