Confed Cup: Rivers in Egypt despite alleged threats

Rivers United arrived in Egypt ahead of their CAF Confederation Cup group second leg play-offs tie against Al Masry at the Al Masry Club Stadium in Port Said, Egypt.

The Nigerian side defeated their Egyptian counterparts 2-1 last Sunday at the Enyimba International Stadium, a result which puts them at risk of elimination from the competition if they lose the second leg by 2-0 or more goal margin.

Players and officials of the club departed the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos on Thursday to honour the continental fixture despite alleged threats from some fans of the hosts who had promised to attack them during or after the game in Egypt.

The threats which were posted on Whatsapp by a suspected Al Masry supporter showed pictures of knives, machetes as well as guns with the inscription, “We will kill you in Egypt, you will be in hell.”

Responding to the threats, Rivers United, on Wednesday, said it had reported the situation to the Confederation of African Football through the Nigeria Football Federation as they hope to safely carry out their assignment in the North African nation.

The statement reads in part, “Rivers United has drawn the attention of Africa’s football governing body, CAF in writing, through the Nigeria Football Federation, as well the Nigerian Embassy in Egypt to this unsavoury and barbaric scheme.”

Despite the threats, the Nigerians say they will not be distracted as they are fully focused on the game and getting a favourable result that will see them qualify.

A draw in Egypt will see the Nigerian side book qualification to the group stage of the competition having crashed out at the same level in the 2020/21 campaign to compatriots Enyimba.