By Akila Matawal
A second-minute strike from Tosin Omoyele made for a slim victory as Enyimba got the better of Dakkada FC 1-0 in a matchday 18 fixture of the Nigeria Professional Football League at the Enyimba International Stadium in Aba on Monday.
Omoyele struck barely two minutes into the game after latching on to a through ball.
After that momentary lapse of concentration, the visitors took control and looked solid at the back.
Christian Ekong thought he had won a penalty after he appeared to be clipped just inside the box, but the referee waved play-on.
Dakkada later had the ball in the back of the net, but it was ruled out for offside.
Despite increasing the tempo after the break, Danlami Umar’s side could not find a way past goalkeeper Olufemi Kayode.
At the other end, the hosts were kept quiet by a defence line comprising Ubong Williams, Karim Abdullahi, Olawale Doyeni and Francis Odinaka looked solid. Odinaka, in particular, put in a flawless performance.
The former Goround defender’s key moments in the game
First Half Key Moments
6′ He intercepted a Samson Obi through ball that could have added to their woes as they had already fallen behind to a Tosin Omoyele early minute strike.
8′ He had to make a last-ditch headed clearance to thwart a raging Samson Obi cross that was bound to land on the foot of a lurking omoyele in the box.
20′ Odinaka denies a Tosin Omoyele close range header, by not giving the striker the chance to direct a goal-bound header; eventually, the striker’s effort went begging for a goalkick.
33′ Odinaka stood on his feet to curtail the efforts of a seemingly lively Omoyele, as the striker was spotted frustrated at a point no thanks to the defender’s presence having him closed down.
36′ Odinaka made a timely cut-out to avert a counter initiated by the midfield trio of Augustine Oladapo, Cyril Olisema and Mohammed Farouk. The defender accurately timed his marking as he regained possession from the defensive half for the Uyo-based side.
Second Half Key Moments
74′ Possibilities for the People’s Elephants via a sweet counter-attacking football was finally cut short by Odinaka, a scenario that could have added to their first half goal.
83′ He had a wonderful interception to deny Emmanuel Ampiah’s left-sided cross as he raced backwards to intercept the ball for a cornerkick, much to the safety of the visitors.
90′ Odinaka retreated to calmly dispossess Omoyele, after a neat build up play in the middle for Enyimba, a feat intended to put the icing on the cake for the hosts.
The former Go Round FC centre-back is in line for more appearances for the Chosen Ones as his partnership with Olawale Doyeni continues to get stronger.