Edo State will provide free bus rides and 100 free t-shirts to fans, who come out en masse to support Bendel Insurance’s quest to qualify for the second round of the CAF Confederation Cup.
Insurance will host Algeria’s Aso Chlef in the first leg of their first-round tie at the Sam Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin.
To get the fans singing Insurance to success on Saturday, Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, on Wednesday, revealed that the administration would create a family atmosphere for fans coming to the arena to enjoy themselves.
According to Chairman of the Edo State Sports Commission, Mr Yusuf Alli, who represented Obaseki in a press briefing on the game on Wednesday, the historic encounter will see Bendel Insurance play again at the continental stage after 34 years.
He said: “We just want you to know what is happening to Bendel Insurance from our own end and from the Governor’s side of it. The last time Bendel Insurance played at the continental level was 34 years ago.
“Now, we are playing on the continent with the first match being this Saturday, we need the whole stadium to be filled up. We want a full capacity. We have tickets printed, airing television and radio commercials. Ticket gates are available for everyone. It is free.
“The state government and our governor are putting everything into hosting the match, ensuring that our team, Bendel Insurance, comes out on top on Saturday. For us, it is historic having not been on this stage in the last 34 years and so coming to this point, we are now and giving the fact that we have made history in the last abridged league and the FA Cup that brought us here. The state government is quite aware of this and because of that, every effort is being made to ensure that no stone is left unturned and that our team comes top.”
He said Governor Obaseki has approved the release of buses to mobilise supporters to and back from the stadium, noting that hundreds of jerseys will be distributed to football fans at the stadium.
Also speaking at the media parley, Managing Director, Edo City Transport Service (ECTS), Hauwa Dupe Ohikhuare, disclosed that the 10 locations for the free bus ride to the stadium include: “Agbor Road-axis -Ramat park; King Square – 1 Mission Road and ECTS main terminal; Ugbowo pick up point- Main Gate and ECTS turning point at Oluku/NIFFOR Junction; Sapele Road- Winners Chapel.
Others are: Airport Road – ADP Junction & Estate Gate; Ekenwa axis – Ojemai farms; Siloko/Ogida – Channel 55; Aduwawa/ Eyan Axis- Pipeline & Idokpa Town Hall. New Benin; Mission Road by Total Junction and Upper Sakponba- Goretti and Third East Circular Junction.
He said the state would organise a roadshow across Benin City today to further drum up awareness and support for the team, while the state governor would visit the team’s camp to inspire the team to victory.