Dakkada football club goalkeeper, Vincent Edafe says the team’s objective this season in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) is to avoid relegation at the end of the season.
Speaking exclusively to The Athletic NG, Edafe revealed that the management, coaches and players are committed to this objective.
“Before this season started, we had a target, ” Edafe said. “Our main target is not to finish in top 4 or to win the league, our objective this season is to remain in the top flight, teams that always gained promotion from the NNL most likely go down at the end, we want to stabilize our status as NPFL team, then we move from there.
“The management, players and coaches came with one mind, which is to remain in the league, that was why we came in and try to win every game, it is very difficult to beat this team and at the end of the season, we won’t be struggling to beat the drop.”
Dakkada FC started their debut campaign like a house on fire, proving to be a difficult team to beat.
The goalkeeper said the team’s mentality is to try and win every game irrespective of where we are playing.
“In football, there is no home or away, when the season started, we only had an objective which was to play football, there was no mentality of home or away.
“Two to three years back, Nigerian league had that home and away syndrome, but in Dakkada, we don’t have that, we believe that football can be played anywhere, that was the key we used early on in the season and it was successful.
“We haven’t abandoned that mentality because we go out to win every game. We work hard in every game, the coach has instilled in us a winning mentality and we go to matches with it, even friendly games we want to win.”
Edafe joined Dakkada who was formerly known as Akwa Starlet from J’Atete before the start of the 2019/2020 season and says he is excited to play for the team and wants to follow in the footsteps of his role model, Vincent Enyeama.
He has kept 8 clean sheets in his debut season in top flight football and thinks he can do more.
“Vincent Enyeama has always been my role model, when the opportunity presented itself for me to come to Akwa Ibom and play for Dakkada, I told myself, this is an opportunity to follow in the footsteps of my mentor, I have to take it.
“He is the role model to young goalkeepers in Nigeria and Africa.
“I want to thank God for the privilege he has given to me. This is my first season in the NPFL, I’ve kept 8 clean sheets already, if someone had told me I will achieve this in my debut season, I wouldn’t have believed it.”
Coach Caleb Esu’s team have struggled in the league despite a bright start to the season, winning only 2 of the last 10 matches and drawing 4, keeping them in 8 position on the log with 34 points.
“As a team, we were struggling before the break, nothing has changed from the way we started, we were only having a difficult spell as it was expected, we had our moments early in the season but when fatigue and other factors set in, you struggle, but we will come out flying when the league finally resumes.
Vincent Edafe is currently on break with his family in Warri due to outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic in the world, but says he is keeping fit ahead of the resumption of the season.
” Everything is going well at the moment, the lockdown was necessary to help contain the spread of the virus.
“As a footballer, it has affected me but I also keep training to remain fit. The break is a temporarily issue, I am a professional, whenever the management decides to bring the league back when the situation has been contained, we will return flying, ” he concluded.