Friday, November 19, 2010

Dolphin, Sharks talk tough ahead derby

Nigeria Premier League (NPL) sides, Dolphin Football Club and Sharks Football Club, have made their intentions clear ahead of this season’s biggest and oldest derby billed to hold at the Sharks Stadium in Port Harcourt on Saturday.
One player that has seen both ends of the fiery Port Harcourt derby is Victor Ezeji.
The 29-year-old is already regarded as a veteran in the Premier League having played for the two biggest clubs in Port Harcourt as well as six-time winners, Enyimba.
Ezeji speaks of the derby: ““It is going to be a difficult game but we are up to the task. We will go out there to win this one for our fans and for the club. The truth is that I have played for both clubs in the past and now I am with Sharks. So I am no stranger to this derby, which is the biggest in the country.
“No doubt, Dolphin have achieved so much in terms of winning laurels compared to Sharks, I believe we can change all of that this season starting with this game.”
Senegalese defender, Ousmane Pape Sane, is also bullish about the chances of his team ahead of the derby.
“I am confident that we can beat them. We have very good players in our team that can make that happen,” he said.
Dolphin, on the other hand, have not dropped points this term and neither have they lost to the Blue Angels in this derby in seven years.
Manager of Dolphin, Stanley Eguma, told that he is happy that his  side have the edge in terms of past results going into this game and will want to keep that record as well as their 100 per cent start to the season.
“We have started the season well by winning our first two games. We will continue in that stride though this is a different match (against Sharks) due to its competitiveness. Also, like you said, we will not want to lose our intimidating record against Sharks in this derby as well,” Eguma said.
Dolphin’s captain, Emma Godwin, is upbeat about his side continuing with their winning run against Sharks.
The longest-serving player of Dolphin said he and his teammates hold no fear for their city rivals.
“I wonder why people are saying that we are afraid of them (Sharks). This is a team that has not beaten us in a long time in the league as far as I can remember. So the issue of being afraid of them does not occur though we have respect for them. It will be 11 men against 11 men when we play on Saturday,” Godwin, who joined Dolphin in 1999, said.
Dolphin lead the NPL with six points after two games while Sharks have two points from two draws.
Last season, both clubs cancelled out each other over two legs in the league in which this corresponding fixture ended goalless while the first meeting finished 1 – 1 at the Liberation Stadium in Port Harcourt.
Interesting the two men that scored on both occasions, Captain Ejindu of Dolphin and Okiemute Odah of Sharks, are still part of the setup for their teams this season.

Sharks versus Dolphin
Recent head-to-head in NPL only
Saturday, March 30, 2003
Dolphin 0 – 0 Sharks
Saturday, May 18, 2003
Sharks 1 – 1 Dolphin
Saturday, May 28, 2005
Dolphin 2 – 1 Sharks
Sunday, November 27, 2005
Sharks 0 – 2 Dolphin
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Dolphin 1 – 1 Sharks
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Sharks 0 – 0 Dolphin

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