The Akure side are the only Nigerian team still in the competition
The Nigeria Football Federation has issued a call to players and officials of the Sunshine Stars Football Club of Akure to do Nigeria proud when taking on CAF Champions League defending champions, Esperance of Tunisia in Ijebu-Ode on Sunday.
Chairman of the Media and Publicity Committee of the NFF, Emeka Inyama said on Thursday that as the only Nigerian club left in the campaign for honours on the continent this year, the NFF would back Sunshine Stars FC all the way.
?Sunshine Stars FC has been consistent in the continent and deserves our total support and the support of all Nigerians, whether individuals or corporate entities. Last year, the team got as far as the semi finals of the CAF Champions League, and that was no mean feat,? he said.
?Now, they are again in the group phase of the most prestigious club competition in Africa, and have demonstrated a capacity to go all the way. The NFF is pleased with the team?s valiant efforts in the earlier rounds but the truth is things will get tougher in the group stage and you cannot get a tougher draw than playing against the Cup holders in your first match in this stage.?
On Sunday, at the Dipo Dina International Stadium, Ijebu-Ode, Sunshine Stars FC lock horns with the Blood and Gold, one of the most successful football clubs on the African continent.
They are also toplay against another illustrious Tunisian side, Etoile du Sahel, as well as ASO Chief of Algeria in their Group A campaign.
Inyama added: ?The entire NFF Board and Management, and the Nigeria football family is behind Sunshine Stars FC as they begin this campaign. We want them to go out there and fight for the country. They are representing a whole nation and that message must be clear to the players and officials.”