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Nigerian Football

Nasarawa Drowned By 10-Man Rivers United





Rivers United overcame Nasarawa United 1-0 in a Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) game decided on Saturday at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium, Port Harcourt.

Ayo Saka scored the winner, an enthralling team goal that left the Nasarawa United goalkeeper, Suraj Ayeleso floundering.

Saka, making only his second start for the club after his mid-season switch from Sunshine Stars, made the decisive contribution in the match day 20 clash at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium.


The midfielder latched onto a superb pass from John Odumegwu who had been slipped through by a deft bit skill by Obomate Frederick before firing past the Nasarawa United goalkeeper, Suraj Ayeleso in the 38th minute.

Five minutes earlier, Rivers United had been reduced to ten men after captain, Festus Austin was sent off for a second bookable offence for handling the ball.

Rather than let their heads drop, the hosts stepped on the accelerator and deservedly took the lead through Saka’s supreme finish.

Odumegwu should have doubled their advantage shortly before half time but shot straight at Ayeleso from point blank range.

The second half failed to match the first in terms of entertainment value as United held out for three vital points.


Rivers United moved up two places on the log as a result of the win and now occupy 11th place on the log with 27 points from 20 matches while Nasarawa United remain in ninth place with 27 points from 20 matches.

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and the country’s most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022.

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