Israel Abia, Sunshine Stars, Adamawa United
Adamawa United suffered a second straight defeat in the league after they were beaten by visiting Sunshine Stars of Akure with a 0-3 scoreline. The loss follows on the heels of their 4-0 defeat on MatchDay 7 in Uyo by Akwa United.

Israel Abia took his season’s goals tally to five so far with a scoring a first half goal that is coming after forward netted four times last week against visiting Nasarawa United in one of the MatchDay 7 fixtures.

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Two other second half goals by substitutes Timileyin Ogunniyi and Sadiq Yusuf ensured the Akure Gunners comfortably return with the maximum points from Pantami Stadium, the adopted home of the Yola-based Adamawa United.

Muhammad Bello of Adamawa United made four changes from his side that suffered that heavy defeat away to Akwa United in Uyo as goalkeeper Pwadadi Bulus was replaced by Victor Philemon. Others include Luran Javan, Muhammed Jiya, and Sadiq Lawan who were left out for Amos James, Tunde Adams and Uzoma Nwobi respectively.

Meanwhile Kabiru Dogo of Sunshine altered five players from the starting eleven that defeated his former club, Nasarawa United 4-2 in Akure, Seun Olulayo, Ikenna Hilary, Waheed Adebayo, Ibrahim Mustapha and Muhammed Sulaiman were preferred ahead of Sunday Abe, Silas Nwanko, Fuad Ekelojuoti, Anthony Omaka and Wasiu Jimo respectively.

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There were hardly any actions in front of goal from both sides until the quarter hour mark though it was the visitors who had a well coordinated movement with the ball within the period. However, Adamawa were the first to see the site of goal when Felix Kenan from a good position fired his attempt just over the cross bar.

In response the Akure side took control of the action to the end of the first stanza. Ten minutes after Adamawa goalkeeper beautifully saved Waheed Adebayo’s powerful shot, the latter sent an inviting cross from right flank just for the in-form forward, Israel Abia to nod in for the opener on 45 minutes. The visitors went to the locker room with a lone goal lead.

Adamawa United were forced to make goalkeeper substitution following Victor Philemon’s inability to continue due injury he seemed to have suffered during the first half and Pwadadi was sent in between the sticks as replacement.

The Owena Waves appeared to have refueled the most during the break and coupled with their opponent’s limitations in coordination in their ball movement. Israel Abia initiated the move for the second goal with an incredible attacking drive that saw him embark on a run against Adamawa’s defense and in doing so over ran even the goalkeeper.

However, the forward could have slotted in another but opted to become a provider for substitute Timileyin Ogunniyi ‘Omo Jesu’ who tapped in to an empty net to extend their lead.

Coach Muhammed Bello’s effort to re-enforce his attack saw him introducing Isa Garba for Nwobi while on the opposite bench, Dogo also reinforced his attacking options by bringing in Sadiq Yusuf in place of Muhammed Sulaiman.

The changes paid off for Sunshine as Stars Yusufas pulled a powerful long range strike only for Pwadadi to produce a finger tip save on 87 minutes. However the shot stopper could not stop another low drive by Yusuf two minutes later for the visitors third goal of the day.

There was an additional seven minutes which Adamawa fans had hoped they could score a consolation goal, but Sunshine stars goalkeeper ensured he kept a clean sheet on the road after producing two dying minute saves off Felix Kenan and Isa Garba in 93 and 95 minutes respectively.

Source: npfl.ng

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