Fidelis Ilechukwu, Head Coach of Plateau United, has vowed to end run of Rangers International Football Club of Enugu in the ongoing Federation Cup, when both sides clash in the semi-final.
Ilechukwu has immediately set his sights on ensuring that their fellow Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) rivals do not make it past the last four stage.
The Jos-based clubside will next face Rangers International FC of Enugu who also qualified for the last four stage on Sunday.
The Flying Antelopes survived the scare of Doma United of Gombe to win 1-0 at the Akure Township Stadium.
The federation cup was an opportunity to make up for Plateau United’s missed chance to qualify for the 2022/2023 NPFL Super Six.
Plateau United finished fifth on the NPFL Abridged League Group A 10-clubside table with 26 points from 18 games played.
He said his team would approach their semi-final match against Rangers like a Cup final.
He stressed that the encounter was going to be a tough battle but believed that his players would prepare very well and do the needful on the pitch to come out victorious.
“I think we have a few things to address in the team, especially in the midfield as we prepare for the semi-final.
“We play Rangers next in the semi-final and of course, they are a team we know very well. We have no choice but to beat them to ensure qualification to the cup final.
“I must confess that they are a very formidable side and it will therefore not be an easy game for us as we look forward to this very important encounter.
“So, we will ensure we go back to the drawing board and work very hard on all our lapses ahead of the crucial encounter,” he said.
On his team’s performance in their quarter-final match against Kwara United, the coach praised his boys for the victory, adding that it was a very difficult game against a tough opponent.
“It was a very tough game, especially with all the pressure my team had to withstand in the second half.
“I had to ring in the changes and made some vital substitutions to stabilize the game.
“The likes of John Roshak, Onyebuchi Ifeanyi, Nenrot Silas had to be substituted for George Owen, Christopher Nweze and Chimezie Izuchukwu.
“The whole idea was basically to reinforce our midfield positions as well as add more bite to our attacking options.
“Kudos also to our solid defense line and goalkeeper who made countless saves to keep us in the game,” he said.