Niger Tornadoes technical adviser, Abubakar Bala has described as huge success his side performance at the ongoing 2020 Ogunjobi Gold Cup tournament despite failings to inch into the medal circle.
The Cup holders failed to progress to the last four from Group A after finishing third behind winners, Remo Stars and Kwara United.
The Ikon Allah Boys lost 0-2 to the hosts, Kwara United, drew 2-2 with group winners, Remo Stars and overpowered Lagos side, 36 Lion with two unreplied goals to amass four points in the campaign.
Bala said his side made progress at the tournament and almost achieved their aims participating in the preseason football event.
“There were improvements in our performance despite the fact that we did not qualify for the semifinals of the competition.
“I think fatigue played a fast one on us coming from a hectic preseason in Katsina to another one in llorin almost within the same time coupled with some other unsavoury happenings.
“At least I was excited that the problems we recorded in Katsina did not show up again in llorin.
“The performance of the players was heart-warming, they blended well and displayed a lot of understanding among themselves.
“I can comfortably say that the essence of going to the preseason tournament was achieved if not exceeded.
“As far as the three departments are concerned we are close to 80% ready for the upcoming league season.
“We have made request to the management to assist in organising four additional friendly matches prior to the start of the season.
“Two of the matches with top premier league sides and another two with non-premier leaguers to finally perfect all the plans for a new league season,” said the former Kwara United and Flying Eagles coach.
Bala will guide the Minna-based side’s quest for glory in the upcoming 2020/2021 nation’s second tier league – Nigeria National League (NNL) season.
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