Bassey Isoni BASSEY
Barely two months to the commencement of the 2021 division one league hostilities in Okigwe, Imo State, the Cross River State flagbearer in the campaign, the Hope of Glory FC of Calabar is not leaving anything to chance in their effort to create a credible impact in the championship.
The club which came into existence a few years ago and owned by Hope of Glory International Church based in Calabar Municipality is gradually becoming a household name in the state, having recorded impressive results in their build-up towards the fast approaching nationwide division one league campaign scheduled for Okigwe in early March, 2021.
Speaking exclusively to TNN Sports in Calabar as regards their preparation for the big tournament, proprietor of the club who is also the General Overseer of Hope of Glory International Church Calabar, Apostle Joshua Umoh expressed Optimism that the sky would be their limit when the championship kicks off.
He confided in TNN Sports that since December last year, there has been no dull moment for them as they had toured the 18 local government areas of the state, scouting for players at the grassroots.
He said the 42 players discovered in the process had since been in camp, training and engaging other clubs in Cross River and neighbouring Akwa-Ibom in friendly games in an effort to remain a strong force ahead of the competition.
Umoh revealed that the club has so far played three friendly matches during which they defeated World Rockets FC of Ikot Ekpene 2-1, walloped Morning Stars of Calabar Municipality 4-0 and were forced to a three all draw by Calabar Rovers with 10 men, adding that plans were underway for them to play more friendlies before the D -day in Okigwe.
On the challenges they were facing since he floated the club, Umoh said “without being sentimental, everything about the game of football is finance. Right now there are 42 players in camp. You know, feeding the players alone is capital intensive and then if you include procurement of playing kits, accommodation and other logistics, then you will understand that it is not an easy task, moreso without support from anywhere.
“Actually, we need financial support from organizations, public spirited individuals and above all the state government, knowing too well that we took these boys from the streets, groomed them and trying to make them live a better life in future is something great and we need to be supported.