Israel Abia Scores Four In Sunshine Stars 4-2 Defeat To Nasarawa United
Israel Abia scored all Sunshine Stars’ goals as the Owena Whales triumphed 4-2 over Nasarawa United in a frantic NPFL match day 7 clash at the Ondo State Sports Complex Sunday.
Both halves of the entertaining contest featured three goals apiece with Abia’s haul also evenly divided across the first and second period in the triumph that saw the Owena Whales moved up to sixth on the log.
The first chance of the game fell to the visitors who appeared determined to arrest their poor run of form, however, Saliu Suleiman was on hand to stop them from racing to an early lead with a great save from point blank inside the opening two minutes.
Three minutes later, the hosts spurned a big chance of their own as match day six hero, Silas Nwankwo could not guide home from goalmouth off a lovely chance created by Abia.
In the 36′ midfield dynamo, Anthony Omaka miscued an effort inside the area from a teasing Wasiu Jimoh’s header, two minutes before Chidi Solomon finally drew the first blood for the Solid Miners with a brilliant chip.
United had barely settled in from their celebrations when Abia restored parity by bundling home his first from a melee and shortly, made it 2-1 for the homers off a header from Wasiu Jimoh’s corner kick at the stroke of half-time.
Three minutes into the final half Mohammed Abdallah brought United back to level term momentarily with a scorcher, but Abia again struck back just a minute later for 3-2.
Nasarawa United will not give in or at least not prepared to go down without a fight and kept surging forward in search of another leveller, but Sunshine Stars’ backline and goalkeeper, Suleiman will not yield again.
Abia completed the haul and put the game to bed with a clinical finish after the Solid Miners failed to clear their line from an Omaka’s pass 11 minutes from time.
With the win, the Akure landlords increased their points tally to 11 from seven matches and next face the challenge of Adamawa United at Pantami Stadium in Gombe on match day eight.
Post Match Reactions
Coach Kabiru Dogo: “It’s a very big victory, I have to commend the boys, the government, the management and my coaches. For the goals? Nothing much, just hardwork and prayers; we give our strikers extra 45 minutes to 1 hour training and thank God for this today.
On facing his former side: “Sometimes you feel somehow, but football is a professional job and I should be prapare to face any challenge and any side. Today I am with Sunshine, tomorrow I could be somewhere else. The job is all about professionalism.”
Abia: “My duty is to score goals and thank God for today; I am happy. With the help of teammates I will score more goals.”
Sunshine XI | Suleiman; Abe, Zikiye, Akpojubweuvwo, Abisoye, Fatokun, Omaka, Ekelojuoti (Olulayo 83′), Nwankwo, Abia (Adejubu 90′), Jimoh (Adebayo 52′)
Unused Subs | Ojo, Adeyemi, Mustapha, Ihuarulam