Enyimba pip Rivers United in Calabar

Football

Enyimba captain, Mfon Udoh led from the front as he won and expertly-dispatched a well-taken penalty in the second half to give his side a 1-0 win over Rivers United in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) on Sunday.

The UJ Esuene Stadium, Calabar was the venue for the well-fought contest which saw the hosts dominate the early exchanges.

United however enjoyed the first real opening of the half when Nzube Anaezemba latched onto Guy Kuemian’s quickly-taken free kick but fired over, from a tight angle, with just the Enyimba goalkeeper, Joel Theophilus Afelokhai.

Enyimba should have scored on the stroke of half time when Ismaila Gata struck a fierce low effort which the Rivers United goalkeeper did well to stop.

The visitors enjoyed the first chance of the second period; an enthralling team move which involved Lukman Mohammed, Kuemian and Esosa Igbinoba.

Igbinoba struck well enough from the edge of the box but was denied by an exemplary stop by Afelokhai.

Udoh then won a penalty for the home side just after the hour mark and struck well enough, into the top left hand corner from 11 metres, to leave Rotimi with no chance.

Emeka Atuloma almost rescued a point for United at the death as he met a Bolaji Sakin corner with a fierce header which the busy Afelokhai scrambled to save.

Enyimba’s head coach, Gbenga Ogunbote spoke about his happiness at his side’s ability to amass maximum points.

“It was a hard-earned victory. We never expected a cheap one because even if they have been knocked out of the (Caf) Champions League, it does not make them a bad side.

“You should not forget that they recruited for the continent so it wasn’t a bad one,” he said after the game.

Technical manager of Rivers United, Stanley Eguma also spoke to the media after the game.

“It was a good game; we played a good game. </p>

“It’s just that we missed our chances and the pitch also affected our game.

“The pitch is very bumpy and not playable. We have lost today and have to look forward to other games.

“We must try to get back to winning ways and improve our position on the log,” he said .
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