One of the top scorers in the Nigerian League, Imade Osarenkhoe, says Bendel Insurance’s primary goal, despite its initial lofty height, is to stay in the NPFL.
Osarenkhoe, who is on a four-match goal streak, in an interview with PREMIUM TIMES, said the newcomers are ready to fight against all odds in the league.
Bendel Insurance’s last campaign in the NPFL ended awfully as they finished ninth with 28 points, but three seasons later, they are back seeking to avoid the 2019 mishap.
The club hasn’t just only transformed in terms of its branding and style of play, it’s also parading young and energetic players this season.
The Coach Monday Odigie-led side is currently top of Group A above Remo Stars with 12 points.
Many of the club’s fans, after enduring the Yo-Yo nature of the team fleeting between the top and second tiers of the Nigerian football league, had dampened expectations at the beginning of the current season, but after four matches, the Benin Gunners are the only club with 100 per cent record after their 3-0 victory over Remo Stars, at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium on Saturday.
Osarenkhoe on Saturday became the first player to score four goals in four consecutive games after Junior Lokosa did for Kano Pillars in 2018.
“As you are aware, the Nigerian League is one of the most competitive leagues in Africa. Being able to score three goals is great and I just give God all the glory.
“Come Saturday, I will just be my normal self,” Osarenkhoe revealed to this newspaper in a telephone interview.
“I will do what I need to do and then, most especially, play as a team player. As I stated during my last interview, our goal is to remain in the league as we don’t want to get relegated.
“So peradventure we make the super six or four at the end of the season, we are grateful, but the major target is to make sure that we remain in the league this season.
It will not be an easy game and I hope to be on my best A game and by the grace of God, we should come out victorious,” Osarenkhoe reflected.
The 22-year-old striker scored against Akwa United on the opening day and followed that up with goals against Plateau United and Kwara United before a tap-in against Remo Stars last Saturday made it four goals in four outings.
Before their cracker against Remo Stars on Saturday, Osarenkhoe boasted that the Benin Gunners were fully prepared to usurp the visitors from the top seat, which they did in a big way.
“You know every game is a preparation for another game, so anything you do wrong, you are a bit more perfect in the next game. So we have done quite some corrections during the training this week. There are certain things we did wrong-that I missed a chance in the second half. Even my coach called my attention to it that there was a particular technique I would have used.
“So we always try to be a little better and more clinical in front of goal. Scoring is actually one of the hardest things in football, so as a striker, you will be insulted if you miss a couple of goal chances.
“The ability to hold on to yourself and always do your best at every game really matters and I think that’s what the coach has been doing with me, and by the grace of God, things are working in our favour and we thank God for that.”
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The Bendel Insurance’s No. 22 revealed his team will not be under any pressure as they keep their heads high against El Kanemi in Maiduguri on Wednesday.
“We are in the right frame of mind; there is no pressure, and as usual, we will take it one game at a time, so we are just doing some tactical corrections to see how we can tactically approach our opponent, and I guess by the grace of God, we should come out victorious,” Osarenkhoe concluded.
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