Coach Solomon Ogbeide believes his Lobi Stars side’s quest to win the coveted Nigerian league title this season received a boost after their 1-1 draw with Sunshine Stars on Sunday.
After their back-to-back home wins over El Kanemi Warriors and Kano Pillars, the Pride of Benue were upbeat about extending their unbeaten run to five against the struggling Owena Whales.
And the visitors’ mission for a win was inspired by a late second-half lead through Samad Kadiri’s header but Jide Fatokun’s injury-time effort halted their bid for maximum points in Akure.
Despite their missed chance for victory, the gaffer insists that he is satisfied with the result and hopeful they would subdue Henry Abiodun’s side when both teams meet next in Markudi.
“Three things happened in a football match, you either draw, lose or win, one of them happened, we picked a draw,” Ogbeide told newsmen
“But I would have loved us to pick the three points, we got a draw at away and it is good for our aspirations.
“The plan was to soak up the pressure and hit them on the counter. But the guys could not sustain otherwise that goal [we conceded] was uncalled for.
“Everyone was just standing and expecting a miracle to happen. Well, I am very optimistic because our home [Aper Aku Stadium] is a fortress and so we won’t lose any point at home.”
Despite the draw, Lobi Stars still hold a four-point lead at the top of the Nigerian topflight log with 34 points from 18 games.
Infantino Reveals How Nigeria Can Host FIFA Competitions
FIFA President, Gianni Infantino last Thursday, in Abuja, revealed how Nigeria can be made a destination for top Grade A football matches and FIFA competitions.
Infantino gave the insight when the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare took him on a tour of the renovated main bowl of the MoshoodAbiola National Stadium.
The FIFA boss, who was visibly happy with the re-grassed pitch at the stadium, said well-maintained stadia with good pitches were key to hosting grade A matches.
He said FIFA was ready to work more closely with Nigeria to develop the game and host more grade A matches in the country.
“We (FIFA) have to make sure when a country, when a government with the President, the minister and private persons are investing in football, in stadia, we work with them to give something back.
“It’s obvious that stadiums like this (MoshoodAbiola stadium) and others in Nigeria deserve the best quality games.
“They deserve top national team games, top club games and it’s not just about Nigerian football or African football, it’s about global football.
“We are working together to see what kind of new opportunities, competitions we can bring for men and women to fill this stadium and make the heart of the stadium beat for the fantastic spectacle that all of the Nigerian love, which is football,” he said.
Earlier, the minister said the Federal Government will continue to invest in sports development and facilities.
Tidesports source reports that the FIFA President, in the company of the minister, had earlier visited President Muhammadu Buhari at the Statehouse, as part of his engagement.
Why NFF Must Offset Rohr’s Salaries, Bonuses – Aikhomogbe
Former Nigerian goal keeper, Andrew Aikhomogbe has called on the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) to resolve every outstanding salaries and bonuses owed to the Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr before the next World Cup qualifiers against Central Africa Republic (CAR).
Aikhomogbe made this known on the backdrop of the football body’s recent deal with Baba Ijebu.
Although the financial details of the deal was not disclosed, Aikhomogbe in an interview with Newsmen from his base in Cairo, Egypt, stated that the NFF should use this platform to offset Rohr’s salaries and bonuses.
“It’s a big delight to know that the Nigeria Football Federation have signed a deal with Baba Ijebu and this will serve as an opportunity for them to use part of the money to pay Rohr’s salaries and bonuses.
“There is no better time to motivate him than now before Nigeria’s next 2022 World Cup qualifiers against the Central Africa Republic (CAR) on October,” he said.
Enyimba Players Vow To Support Finidi
Enyimba FC Goalkeeper, John Noble has stated that the players of the People’s Elephants will be key to the success of the newly appointed coach of the team, Finidi George.
Finidi, signed a two-year deal with Enyimba and oversaw his first full training session with the team on Thursday after a cameo appearance on Wednesday.
Speaking in a chat with Tidesports source, Noble gave his assessment of the coach in his first session under the manager and believes the former Super Eagles winger has what it takes to lead the team to the next level.
He added that the Enyimba players will be the ones to hand Finidi George his success at the club.
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