Unknown bandits yesterday morning robbed players and officials of the Osun United Football Club along the Ore/Ondo expressway, inflicting various degrees of injuries on the victims.
The Guardian learnt that the team was travelling back to its base in Osogbo, Osun State from Calabar where it honored their Week 14 Bet9ja Nigeria National League match.
According to sources, the vehicle conveying the team developed some fault few kilometers to Ondo town, where the armed men reportedly came out from the bush and attacked the footballers.
The 32-seater coaster bus, which contained 28 people including 18 players and technical crew led by coach Duke Udi were reportedly ransacked by the hoodlums. According to a source, the attackers matcheted members of the team, particularly the driver of the bus, the team’s goalkeeper, Ayo Ojo and dispossessed them of their money, phones and other valuables.
The State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Mr. Femi Joseph, who confirmed the incident, said the attackers were not real armed robbers, but hoodlums who might be living in nearby villages. “The incident happened on Wednesday morning at about 1.00am when members of the team were coming from the eastern part of the country.
“Those people that attacked the footballers are not deadly armed robbers because they only attacked them with cutlass and sticks. If they were real armed robbers, they would attack with guns.
“When the footballers were trying to retreat, some of them were injured by the hoodlums. The injured ones have been taken to the hospital in Ondo town,” he said. Joseph added that the command had begun investigation on the matter, assuring that the police were already on the trail of the hoodlums who, according to him, lived in the villages around the scene of the crime.