Ahead of Sunday’s crucial CAF Confederations Cup qualifiers against Djoliba AC of Mali, ACLSports caught up with MFM Captain and centre-back, Austine Opara who spoke about his expectations for the game.
In the heart of MFM FC defence is the solid partnership between Austine Opara and Chuka Uwaga, who have been immense for the Olukoya boys. Speaking on their partnership, the Captain of the side, Opara said: “I’m a kind of person that likes to play with people that don’t complain (even if we’ve not been playing together for long) and just try to play along and I’m happy playing with Uwaga Chuka.”
The confusing thing however is that despite this partnership, MFM FC still always find a way to concede. “About that, what I understand is: nobody is perfect and this is football, anything can happen,” the MFM skipper said.
“Everyday we are learning in football and it is only the grace of God that would allow a back line to defend for 90mins without conceding a goal. But this is a game and it is a normal thing in football, so it’s not that we are just purposely conceding goals.”
On the game against Djoliba AC, it would not be an easy task keeping the Malians at bay especially considering they play with long balls because of how tall they usually are.
“I’ve seen the team play at home in the CAF CL,” he said. “We will have to deal with a lot of crosses. We have a lot to do to make sure we don’t concede so that we can try to score maybe 3 or 4 goals.
“It is very very very important we keep a clean sheet,” Opara added. “We have to do extra and make sure we don’t concede even half goal because conceding here will be a problem for us and we don’t know what we are going to face away. We have to try to make sure we defend every goal and don’t concede any goal,” he concluded.