ABIA WARRIORS DEFEAT LEAGUE LEADER PLATEAU UNITED
Abia Warriors Of Umuahia stretched their unbeaten home record as they thrashed League leaders Plateau United of Jos 3-0 NPFL Matchday Eleven (11) fixtures.
The highly explosive and much anticipated fixture lived up to its billing as the teams entertained the spectators with the best of football artistry with couple of goals to ice the epic encounter.
The Umuahia Warriors were the first out early in the game as they mounted ceaseless pressures in the opponents half in search of an early curtain raiser but all to no avail as Former Nigeria Junior International Goalkeeper Dele Ajiboye making couple of brilliant saves to deny Abia Warriors an early lead.
The Abdul Maikaba tutored side kept it all solid at the heart of their defence line till the team found its rythm in the midfield.
Plateau United midfield trio of Isah Ndala, Uche Onwusoanya and Buhari Ibrahim bossed the middle of the park with their defy touches leaving the Umuahia Warlords to chase around. Their mobility and tiki taka style of play was a delight to watch, but lacked cutting edge.
Plateau United goalie Dele Ajiboye and the woodwork denied Abia Warriors duo of Bello Lukman and Oni Jimoh respectively their goal chances on the 13th minute.
The Center Referee stood his ground insisting Jimoh Oni’s effort that rattled the cross bar didnt pass the goalline regardless of the pressure mounted by the Abia Warriors players.
Former Abia Warriors diminutive centre foward Ibe Michael Okoro and Tosin Omoleye tested goalkeeper Uche Okafor on different occasion but none of their effort was a difficult one for the Former Junior International to handle.
Abia Warriors broke the deadlock as the time approached half hour mark and it was ’25th December BIRTHDAY boy’ Emmanuel Ugwuka who gave the Umuahia Warlords the much anticipated lead as he swiftly followed up Jimoh Oni shot on goal that was parried to his way by Dele Ajiboye and the petit striker made no mistake to poke in the ball into the open net.
Plateau United goalkeeper nearly doubled Abia Warriors lead with school boy mistake as his clearance deflected on Bello Lukuman and the ball missed the back of the net by whiskers.
Both teams returned from the locker room after the half time break and it was a different ball game as the Jos based team who got the second half underway mounted pressure on Abia Warriors Austin Obaroakpo marshalled defence line but the Umuahia team never gave in as they defended stoutly to deny the League leaders their scoring chance.
Coach Abdu Maikaba was forced to effect an early change as enterprising Michael Ibe Okoro could not continue following his collision with Abia Warriors Emeka Isaac.
Abia Warriors Emmanuel Deutsch threw in Ivory coast import Guy Keumian into the fray to replace Emmauel Ugwuka and the substitute turned the game changer as he doubled Abia Warriors lead as he pounced on Dele Ajiboye error to slot the back into the empty net.
Guy keumian on the 87th assisted Abia Warriors enterprising striker Bello Lukuman with a sumptuous defence splitting pace and the tall lanky striker made no mistake as he beautifully fires the ball to the bottom corner of the net to send the spectators into wild jubilation, with his first ever premiership goal.
It remained a ding dong affair between the two sides till the Referee signalled end of proceedings and it was Abia Warriors clinching all three points at stake.
The convincing win thus placed the Umuahia Warlords on 4th position on the logo as to end the Year and the decade on a good note.
Abia Warriors will clash with Kwara United in illorin on Matchdah twelve.
Goalscorers for Abia Warriors
28′ Ugwuka Emmanuel
83′ Guy Kuemian
87′ Bello Lukman
Abia Warriors Line Up
Uche Okafor, Austin Obaroakpo,Parfait Jean, Innocent Gabriel, Isaac Emeka, Fatai Abdullahi, Oghenetega Ebetomame , Yakub Hammed, Ugwuka Emmauel, Bello Lukman, Oni Jimoh
Plateau United Line Up
21. Dele Ajiboye 2. Chizoba Amaefule 3. Daniel Itodo 1. Charles Henlong 20. Andrew Ikefe 15. Buhari Ibrahim 38. Nenrot Silas 17. Isah Ndala 9. Tosin Omoyele 23. Michael Ibeh 35. Uche Onwuaso
Abia Warriors FC