In the penultimate Match Day of the Port Harcourt City League, gout matches were decided on Monday, December 14th, 2020 as D/Line United overpowered a clueless and disjointed MFM FC by 2-1 in the 8 am kick-off.
An under-par MFM FC had a man-advantage but failed to nick the needed result.
Despite having the ball possession, coach Abubakar Ibrahim’s tactical ability and pedigree could not lead his team to a win.
His lads in their unique way couldn’t hit target having garnered much of the possession.
Their opponents who have proved in previous matches to allow opposing teams dictate play did create two half-chances before the break. Kenneth Ogechukwu on two occasions fired blanks that didn’t trouble Desmond Egomonu an outfield player that was in goal for MFM FC.
MFM successfully went in front in the 67th minute. The wonder kid of the MFM side, Marvelous Okolie beat the offside trap and roamed into the box to strike past the D/Line goalkeeper for the opener. Moments later, Kelvin Achudime of D/Line United violently headbutted the center referee in his quest to question the goal which got him red-carded.
D/Line United wasn’t undeterred after the incident. The skipper of the side, Ogo Godgift galvanized his teammates to an incredible comeback when he rose highest and nodded the equalizer with ten minutes left. The winner came at the stroke of the 90th minute via a well-struck goal by Gerald Clement.
Ihejirika returns for MCWJEF
The relegation battle came to the fore between bottom-placed, Dumo United and MCWJEF Soccer Academy. MCWJEF, just like their counterparts from the ‘firebrand MFM had a passage of the ball but lacked the creative spark in the final third. Dumo United without their key players allowed MCWJEF to be on the front foot in the 7th minute. Eric James scored to relieve pressure from an underperforming coach Ndubuisi Ihejirika who had missed his side’s last three games.
At the other end, Otonye George had two attempts in the 12th and 17th minute that called the goalkeeper to action. A brilliant stop, off a dipping free-kick from 25 yards and another flick that wasn’t enough to trouble Joshua Prince.
With the game petering out, MCWJEF carried a threat from the flanks with Daniel Sugh showing trickery in the Dumo box. The chance to hit the target was averted by the dogged defending of the Dumo side. Shockingly, Chibuzor Madufor powered past the MCWJEF goalkeeper from 12 yards to restore parity. Justice Isaac was hauled down by Rachidi Chidi for the penalty.
Moments after conceding the penalty, Rachidi Chidi redeemed himself with a curling right-footed shot into the top corner with five minutes left on the clock.
“My attackers haven’t given in their best in the league. It’s been my major challenge because we have been doing well and dominating possession.” Coach Ndubuisi Ihejirika of MCWJEF Soccer Academy said after the game.
Dolphins level at the top
A blockbuster game of week 14 ensued in the 1 pm kick-off. High flying Dolphins Football Academy had a cagey affair with Port Harcourt City FC. Ibinabo Johnbull was kept on the bench for Port Harcourt City FC which cost them in the game. Consul Israel who took his place didn’t give pressure to the Dolphins defenders.
Port Harcourt City FC were surprisingly lackluster in the final third shooting wayward that had a little spark for a goal. Dolphins in their clinical approach to their previous matches ran the show four minutes before the break.
An effective electric combination by David Opara and Kolapo Ismalia broke the deadlock. The latter gave an excellent pass that saw David Opara shrugged off a shaky Port Harcourt City FC defense for the goal.
Dolphins held sway for most of the game at the restart. Their opponents only managed to muster a weak shot by an Anyim Oscar for their first shot at goal with ten minutes to regulation time. The win puts them with the same number of points as SKE who take on Port Harcourt United in their next game.
In the final game, it was a narrow one-nil victory by Friends Club against relegation bound Sharp Arrows.
Jumbo Joseph scored the lone goal in the 50th minute to give Friends the maximum points.
The games continue
Four matches will continue on Tuesday, December 15th, 2020 to conclude week 14 matches.
Abali United will be up against Glodek FC at 8 am while Salvation Boys take on Ororo FC at 10 am. Ambassadors FC has a date with Elekahia United at 1 pm. The last game of the day is between SKE FC and Port Harcourt United at 3 pm.
All matches will take place at Joseph Yobo Mini Stadium, D/Line.