Kano Pillars stay top, Dolphins return to top 4

Kano Pillars retained their position at the top of the Nigeria Professional Football League table as they beat Akwa United 1-0 in Kano.

Two centers also produced 9 goals while now away side got a point in the last weekend of Nigerian Football action

Sharks woes continue
Sharks’ woes on the road continued unabated as the coach Gbenga Ogunbote tutored lads failed to pick at least a point following the two-nil defeat in the hands of Nasarawa united at the Lafia Township Stadium on Sunday.

A momentary loss of concentration in Sharks back line in the 45th minute led to the first goal of the day Ugochukwu Leonard capitalized on a poor clearance to slot in the goal for Nasarawa United.

The first half ended with the homers leading by a lone goal and on the resumption of play Nasarawa doubled the lead in the 48th minute, almost in similar fashion like they got the first goal but this time off a corner kick.

Sharks greatest undoing in the game even before the homers scored was the inability of the midfielders to connect with Christian Pyagbara and Ifeanyi Inyiam upfront and at some point both strikers had to fall deep into the half way mark to get ball.

Sharks coach, Gbenga Ogunbote blamed the loss on the inability of his players to react to dead ball situations.

Dolphins return to top 4

Dolphins returned to top 4 on the log of the Nigeria Professional Football League following a 2-0 win over Gombe United in Port Harcourt.
The first half showed a Dolphins side that failed to convert lots of scoring chances that came their way.
Emem Eduok, Ebube Okpokwu and Ifeanyi Egwim were the biggest culprits as they either shot wide when face with a goalscoring opportunity of shot into the hands of the Gombe United goalkeeper, Ahmed Yusuf in goal in place of Chigozie Agbim who was not even dressed for the game.
Philip Asukwo on the other hand, as well as former Dolphins boy, Austin Ekpoma ran the midfield for Gombe United but without Adamu Mohammed upfront, again not dressed for the game, it was difficult to penetrate the Dolphins backline of Chizoba Amaefule, Jonathan Zikiye, Ayobami Asekunowo and Victor Ezuruike.
After a goaless first half, Dolphins scored in the 73rd minute through a penalty converted by Chizoba Amaefule, but this was after Austin Ekpoma had been sent off for dissent.
Five minutes later, Emem Eduok, in a solo effort put the game behind the visitors.
Stanley Eguma, head coach of Dolphins was pleased with the results, saying his players will soon begin to convert more of their scoring chances.
“It was a good match and we needed the three points at stake. I commend the efforts of the players too.
“Gombe United came with very frustrating tactics and we had to change ours at half time,” EGuma said.
Eguavoen on his part said, they did not meet their target in Port Harcourt.
“I feel bad. We came here to get at least 4 points from the two games but Dolphins are no push overs and someone must win a game,” Eguavoen said.

For Rangers, the Good Run Continues, pip Wolves 1-0

Rangers International of Enugu continued their revival in the ongoing 2013\ 2014 Glo Premier league with a second straight home win in four days at the Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium where they pipped visiting Warri Wolves 1-0.

Rangers had in midweek handed Dolphins FC  a 2-1 defeat with striker Osaguona Ighodaro going top of the season's scorers' chart with 14 goals courtesy of his curtain raiser in that game.

Rangers approached the game briskly from the blast of the whistle and were asking all the questions with Osaguona looking for his 15th goal which never came.

Rangers was to be gifted a penalty on the 25th minute after a Warri Wolves defender handled the ball off a shot by Chinedu Udeagha. Gangling Christian Obizor made sure from the spot as he coolly slotted home to beat Daniel Akpeyi in goal for Warri Wolves.

Rangers held on to the one goal lead all through the match but it was a determined Warri Wolves that pushed unsuccessfully for the equalizer, seeking to sustain their five year's record of not losing to Rangers..

Reacting to the encounter Ranger Technical Adviser John said he was impressed with his boys performance on the day attributing the win to hard work.

"My players gave their all in this game knowing that a win will help the teams standing on the league. They worked hard for this result and it paid off", Obuh responded at a post match chat with www.lmc-ng.org

Warri Wolves Manager, Paul Aigbogun was philosophical in his response, saying, "this is football, sometimes you win and sometimes you lose. We gave it our all but the game went the way it wanted. Rangers is a good team and today was their day, so they should celebrate".

Rangers travel to Umuahia next to face Abia Warriors on wednesday while Wolves return to Warri to host Dolphins.

Giwa's Okoro Shrugs off 'diving' charge

Giwa FC turned back FC Taraba with two first half goals but striker Charles Okoro drew attention to himself when center referee, Ben Neji booked him on 64th minute for diving in the second half.

But Okoro was quick to dispel impressions  that he is a fraud on the pitch insisting shortly after the game that 'I am no diver'.Shuaibu Ibrahim at 90 minute

Mohammed Saleh scored a brace from the penalty spot on 40th and in added time of first half while Shuaibu Ibrahim added a third on 90th minute to ensure that Giwa FC hung within the middle of the table on 11th place and safe from threats of relegation.

Following the booking in the fixture which was one of the Matchday 27 games of the Glo Premier League, Charles who had been booked in a previous match will not be part of the squad for Giwa FC midweek trip to Uyo where they face Akwa United.

Speaking with www.lmc-ng.org, Charles denied that he took to theatrics to get a chance to score and declared,

“I’m not a diver, I don’t dive or play tricks and I don’t know what happened in that particular situation that got me booked. The Referee saw it differently I think. The referee saw it as diving but to me it was not a dive because I was actually hacked down.”.

He admits that life in the Plateau with Giwa FC has been a roll for him and attributes their modest success to team work.

“Jos has been fine for me and I am happy with the team. We are a determined side and have been working very hard to see that we prove a point in our first season on the top flight. As a team we are working and praying hard and it has worked for us.” 

Enyimba preserve home invincibility, thrash Bayelsa 4-0

Enyimba cast aside their midweek disappointment to rump to a 4-0 thumping of Bayelsa United at the Enyimba International Stadium in Match Day 27 fixture played Sunday evening,

Chimezie Amanfor opened scoring on the 41st minute after the Bayelsa defenders had failed to deal with a ball inside the box. Mfon Udoh who came in for Andrew Abalogu minutes earlier made it two just before half time.

Nzube Anaezemba continued his goal scoring spree at home with a beautifully curled effort on the 55th minute. Emeka Nwanna then made it four in stoppage time lifting the ball over Ambrose Vansekin in goal for Bayelsa United.

Bayelsa United were better in the opening exchanges; sturdy defending, committed challenges and choosing to play on the break. For the first half of an hour, they brilliantly kept Enyimba at bay.

Kadiri Ikhana then twitched his formation, swapping Andrew Abalogu for Mfon Udoh; the substitute's pace and movement adding a different dimension to Enyimba's attack and on the 41st minute, the breakthrough came.

Meshack Chukwubuikem exchanged passes with Udoh who fired at Vansekin. The keeper parried into the path of Chimezie Amanfor who fired at goal. The ball took a slight deflection on its way in and while a white shirt tried to hack it out, the ball had crossed the line already. The Assistant referee confirmed that it had indeed crossed the line.

Seven minutes were added due to an earlier injury to Ambrose Vansekin and Enyimba got their second on the fifth minute of the seven? Ugwu Uwadeigwu crossed in from the right and Mfon stole in behind Azubuike Okechukwu to nick it beyond the goalkeeper.

Their onslaught continued in the second half with Amanfor forcing a save from Vansekin. His opposite number Femi Thomas had barely done anything all day.

Enyimba made it three in the 55th minute when Nzube curled a lovely effort beyond Vansekin. Then, Bayelsa tried to respond but Bernard Okorowanta's strike from a Frank Egharevba pass was wayward.

But the hosts were not done yet. Udoh forced Vansekin to a finger-tip save from a freekick and minutes later, he denied the striker again in a one on one situation. Nwanna entered the fray in the closing stages and got Enyimba's 4th lifting Anaezemba's through ball over the onrushing Vansekin.

Full Results

El-Kanemi Warriors FC 2 - 1 Heartland FC
Enyimba International FC       4 - 0 Bayelsa United    
Kano Pillars         1 - 0 Akwa United FC
Rangers International FC        1 - 0 Warri Wolves FC
Nasarawa United FC     2 - 0 Sharks FC
Kaduna United FC         5 - 0 Crown FC
Dolphins FC        2 - 0 Gombe United FC
Giwa FC     3 - 0 Taraba FC
Sunshine Stars     3 - 1 Abia Warriors

Nembe City   -      Lobi Stars FC       
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