Niger Tornadoes striker Ebenezer Odeyemi believes the synthetic surface of the Agege Stadium will serve as an advantage for his side when they face Akwa United in Sunday’s AITEO Cup final.
Tornadoes are ranked outsiders in their meeting with 2015 champions United but power playing forward Odeyemi insists his side are mentally ready for the challenge and hope to finish the season on a high at Agege where they started the season.
“It (the pitch) will definitely serve as an advantage to us,” said Odeyemi to www.aclsports.com
“That (Agege Stadium) is where we started this season and it is where we will be ending it and I believe we will end well.”
Tornadoes have eliminated two heavyweights FC Ifeanyiubah and Plateau United in the last two rounds and Odeyemi who scored against Plateau says those victories have helped their belief and mentality going into Sunday’s final.
“Having defeated the league champions and defending champions, we see ourselves capable of lifting the trophy,” said the former Enyimba striker.
“We’ve been so determined and God has been helping us so I believe our mental alertness will help us a lot. We see ourselves as an underdog that wants to make name and the belief is what has been helping us,” he added.
Odeyemi has featured for Kogi United, Enyimba, Wikki Tourists and now Niger Tornadoes but the striker rates Sunday’s game as one of the biggest he has ever featured in yet.
“For me personally, I can say it is one of the biggest games in my career and I can say I am very much prepared and eager to give it my all.”
“The team is also well prepared for the game. Thanks to God, thanks to the coaches and the mentality in the camp. I can say we are mentally and physically prepared for the game.”
Sunday’s game holds at the 4,000 capacity Agege Stadium which hosts home matches for NPFL side Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries (MFM) FC. Tornadoes were hammered 3-0 by MFM on Match Day one in the just concluded league season but Odeyemi insists things have changed from that time.
“That time, we were not cohesive enough when we started the league but now I believe we have a better team and we understand ourselves better. We know each other’s strengths and weaknesses. We know how we can manage ourselves now and that will really go a long way in helping us on Sunday,” he affirmed.
Tickets for the game are expected to go on sale on Friday for 1,000 naira popular stands, just over $3. The game kicks off at 4pm local time.