Sunshine Stars climbed to seventh position in the NPFL table after labouring to a 2-1 victory over Dakkada at the Dipo Dina Stadium, Ijebu Ode on the penultimate match day of the first stanza.
The Owena Whales fell behind to the Uyo based side after two minutes, but turned things around with goals from Babatunde Bello and Ikenna Cooper in either half of Sunday’s encounter.
Emmanuel Charles’ early goal for Dakkada altered the course of the game and made it a one-way traffic for the homers, who only trailed for 12 minutes as Bello powered home a trademark free kick to bring us back to level term.
Our boys could have gone out of sight afterward, with Ebonam Nwogbaga, Leonard Ugochukwu and Cooper knocking hard, however, cases of near miss and goalkeeper Thomas Omokhudo’s heroics kept the score line all square at the interval.
Bello went close to grabbing the winner 12 minutes into the restart but his volley from close range cannoned off the woodwork agonizingly.
Regardless of Dakkada’s resistance Cooper squeezed home the decisive goal at the near-post, following back-to-back corner kicks 14 minutes from time, his first in Orange and Blue.
The boys saw out the remainder of the contest with little or no fuss, and take home the win that increased our point tally to 26 as we brace up for Plateau United challenge in Jos on match day 19.
POST MATCH REACTION🎙
The gaffer, Deji Ayeni faced the media after the match and was quick to praise his players for recovering from an early set back to secure the victory.
“All the teams are ready; if you look at Dakkada, you can’t use their position to rate what they did today. For us; when a team is doing well and suddenly their is a breakage to pick up has to be gradual.
“If you watch, the boys were very anxious to get back to winning ways but I was calming them down. By and large we should not take it away from them because they fought back from an early minute goal and mounting high pressure on Dakkada paid off in the end.”
On Plateau United
“Every matches tactical approach differs and Plateau United have been doing well this season; they are a team to beat, everyone know that they are a good team, but when we get to the river we will know how to cross it.”
Sunshine XI | Lawal; Abe (C), Sholumade, Uzoechi, Dauda; Bello, Cooper, Ajagbe (Taofeek 89′); Adeniji (Awosanmi 56′), Nwogbaga (Kalejaiye 56′) Ugochukwu (Vincent 79′)
Unused Subs | Ibikunke; Ozor, Adeyemi, Omowanle, Chilekwu
Caution | Cooper 66′
Media Head; SSFC
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