By Segun Giwa
Kwara United Football Club of Ilorin on Sunday picked the full points in their 2020/2021 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) Match Day 9 encounter with Sunshine Stars FC of Akure.
In the match played at the Ondo State Sports Complex In Akure, the visitors won 2-1 after a goalless first half where there were no clear-cut chances created by both sides.
Five minutes into the second half, striker Sadeeq Yusuf broke the deadlock with a powerful shot from an acute angle in the penalty box after a pass from Abiodun Joseph.
Four minutes later, substitute Issa Gata’s first touch at the edge of the penalty box sent him past his marker.
He then shot into the bottom left side of the post to draw Kwara United level.
The hosts fought back, with Fuad Ekelojuoti drawing a save from goalkeeper Dele Aiyenugba in the 64th minute.
He also hit the framework in the 68th minute after a lovely interchange in the area.
However, against the run of play, the visitors took the lead through Stephen Jude whose fine finish, after being left with enough time to slot home, left Sunshine Stars’ goalkeeper helpless.
Kwara United’s Head Coach, Abdulahi Biffo, at the post-match conference said his team would not allow the win to get into their heads as they prepare for the next match.
“It’s a perfect and good way to start (the league). This is just week nine. But we will not allow this one to go to our heads.
”We still have 29 matches and if we keep on with this performance, I can see us holding on to one of the valuable spaces in the league to play on the continent next season,” he said.
The Sunshine Stars’ Head Coach, Gbenga Ogunbote, apologised on behalf of his team for the result.
He, however, said they would go back to the drawing board to make amendments where it is necessary .
The coach defended the inclusion of newly-cleared players in the team, saying the players needed time to blend with the rest of the team.
“We are going to bounce back, better and stronger. This is just a temporary setback, and I’m assuring our teeming supporters that we will not allow the loss to weigh us down,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Kwara United are now second on the league table with 18 points, while Sunshine Stars are 10th on the log with 13 points.(NAN)