Barely two months after parting ways with his former club Sunshine Stars to join Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) title holders Akwa United, Coach Ayodeji Ayeni says he will not be surprise if he is greeted with a warm reception in Akure on Matchday 28, when his new team will go head-to-head with his former side.
Coach Ayeni, who received an Award as NPFL Best Coach in the month April by League Bloggers, has guided the Promise Keepers to three wins, four draws and with just one loss in his eight games in charge.
Speaking ahead of his team’s Matchday 28 clash with host Sunshine Stars, Coach Ayeni said it will be an emotional game for him, but added that his team’s target is to challenge for maximum points.
“It will be an emotional return to Akure for me this weekend. I enjoyed my time as a coach of Sunshine Stars and I have many good memories too. Throughout my stay with the club, I didn’t have any issue with the management or with the fans and so, I won’t be surprise if I get a warm reception from the fans.
“Coming back to Akure to face my former team will be an interesting affair and we are expecting a tough match. I wish to say that my team’s mission is to play good football, make the best use of the chances that will come our way and above all, we will fight to get a positive result on Sunday”.
Akwa United, 5th on the log with 40 points from 27 matches were held to a 1-1 draw at home by Enyimba last weekend, while Sunshine Stars, who are 10th on the log with 37 points from the same number of matches lost their last outing 1-0 to Gombe United.
Both teams have met 17 times in the past, with Akwa United having the upper hand with six victories, to Sunshine Stars’ five wins while six of those encounters ended in draws.
In their last five outings, the hosts have managed just one win, with two draws and two defeats while the champions have picked up two wins, two draws with just one defeat.
The first meeting between Akwa United and Sunshine Stars ended goalless in Uyo and both sides will be aiming to snatch victory on Sunday.
The crucial game will kick off at four O’clock in the afternoon at the Akure township stadium.