By Mfoniso Williams
Emmanuel Deutsch has been sacked as Abia Warriors head coach following a disappointing run of results, culminating in Monday’s 4-1 home loss.
The Cameroonian returned to the Umuahia club for a second spell in April 2019, taking over from Henry Makinde, who reportedly resigned.
He guided Warriors to top-flight safety, securing their NPFL stay on final day with a 3-0 home win over Kano Pillars.
Unfortunately, recent weeks have been rather disappointing for the coach, with his side — who have taken only six points from their last seven games — sliding towards the drop zone.
Initial reports claimed the former Heartland gaffer left the club on his own terms but according an official statement, Deutcsh was fired by club management.
“Abia Warriors footbalĺ club of Umuahia has relieved Coach Emmanuel Deutcsh of his position as the Head Coach following recent poor performances in the on going Nigeria ProfessionalFootball League particularly after the team lost scandalously to Enyimba FC in the matchday 20 game played at the Okigwe Township stadium,” a club statement said.
The club, who sit 14th in the NPFL table, also announced that assistant coach Willy Udube has been put in temporary charge.
Udube has already assumed his new role, and will be in charge when Warriors play Katsina United on Sunday.
The tactician will be looking to at least avoid defeat in Katsina before returning home to face Akwa United.
It’s not yet clear if the clash with Akwa United will hold in Umuahia, as it looks likely that the School Road outfit will be banished from the Umuahia Township Stadium, where a section of their fans disrupted Sunday’s fixture with Enyimba.
The Abia derby was abandoned following clashes between opposing fans.
Play was discontinued few minutes after Emeka Isaac missed a penalty, with the League Management Company ordering a continuation at Okigwe Stadium on Monday.
And in Okigwe, Enyimba fired four past their rivals to record a 4-1 win and extend their winning streak to four matches in the league and five in all competitions.
Stanley Dimgba fired the Aba side into the lead on 41 minutes from Cyril Olisema’s chipped pass and Victor Mbaoma doubled the advantage just before the break.
Anayo Iwuala made it 3-0 in the 61st minute, before Dimgba got his second of the game to give Fatai Osho’s men a 4-0 lead.
Yakub Hammed pulled one back with 16 minutes left to play, but the strike proved no more than a consolation.
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