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Catastrophic Plateau Utd implode as Rivers United reach Confed Cup group stage

Nigerian representatives in the continent suffered contrasting fortunes yesterday in far away Libya as Plateau United failed to progress in the Confederation Cup after imploding…

Nigerian representatives in the continent suffered contrasting fortunes yesterday in far away Libya as Plateau United failed to progress in the Confederation Cup after imploding against Al Akhdar but Rivers United fought gallantly to move on in the competition after playing out a 1-1 draw against Al Nasr.

It was a disastrous outing for Plateau United who despite their 4-1 lead secured in the first leg of the Confederation playoff, suffered a crushing 3-0 loss at the Benina Martyrs Stadium to exit the competition on the away goal rule.  

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Plateau United managed to play 0-0 at halftime but capitulated in the second half when they conceded three goals after wasting numerous chances in the first 45 minutes.

The Coach Fidelis Ilechukwu led side eventually paid dearly for their profligacy as they conceded the first two goals in the 62nd and 87th minute and with five minutes left to play, the ‘Tin City’ boys failed to hold their nerves thereby conceding the back-breaking goal in the fourth minute of added time.

By their woeful performance in Benghazi, the 2017 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) champions have now failed to reach the group stage of the Confederation Cup after their demotion from the Champions League.

It will be recalled that Plateau United had dropped to the lower league after they failed to overcome Esperance hurdle in the Champions League.

Meanwhile, it was not all gloom for Nigerian football as NPFL defending champions, Rivers United, forced host Al Nasr to a 1-1 draw to qualify for the group stage.

Although the hosts drew the first blood when Abdulsalam Al Fitouri put them in front in the 39th minute, former Kano Pillars man, Nyima Nwagua, restored parity for Rivers United in the 57th minute for the ‘Pride of Rivers’ to progress  6-1 on aggregate.

Going by yesterday’s outing by the NPFL clubs, Rivers United are the remaining Nigerian club in the continent.

No Nigerian club has won the Confederation Cup title since it was introduced by CAF.

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