Alimi's goal down El-Kanemi, lifts Sunshine Stars away from drop zone

By Blessing Fowowe

Sikiru Alimi's 34th minute headed was all Sunshine Stars needed as they pipped El-Kanemi Warriors 1-0 in Sunday's Matchday 31 clash of the NPFL at the Dipo Dina Stadium in Ijebu-Ode.

Sunshine Stars who have been on a decent run of form recently following their one-nil victory over Rivers United in Port Harcourt last Wednesday started the game early on, with intent, having a beautiful interchange between Ajibola Otegbeye and Sikiru Alimi cut short by the Warriors' defence in the sixth minute.


Three minutes later, Sunshine Stars had their attack stopped again following a well taken corner kick by captain Sunday Abe. In the 19th minute, Dayo Ojo had a chance to open scoring for his side with a free kick at the edge of the box, but he could only send his effort wide off target.

El-Kanemi Warriors soon found their rhythm as they broke on a counterattack. Ibrahim Babangida however managed to send his cross straight into the waiting hands of goalkeeper Henry Ayodele in the 21st minute.

Sunshine Stars came close again few minutes later with Michael Okoyoh's volley from a distance, but Agbokou Judickael successfully gathered the ball to keep the game level.

Warriors got their first chance of the match in the 26th minute when former Sunshine Stars player Yahuza Bala went through on goal, but his shot was well saved by Henry Ayodele.

Respite however came for the Akure Gunners in the 34th minute. Alaba Adeniyi lifted a cross into the El-Kaneni box, and a mix-up among the away team's defenders allowed Alimi nod past Judickael.

Ten minutes later, Yahuza Bala came close to getting an equalizer, after his shot hit the bar as the Sunshine Stars defenders scrambled to clear their lines.

In the second half, Bala continued with his impressive performance. This time he had his run cut short for offside by the assistant referee.

As the game wore on, Ladan Bosso's side continued to push for an equalizer, but Henry Ayodele remained solid in goal for his side as Sunshine Stars ran out winners in the end.

Sunshine Stars 1-0 El-Kanemi
Throw-ins: 8-11
Free kick: 15-10
Yellow Card: 3-1
Red Card: 0-0
Corners: 5-1
Offside: 0-5
Shots (off target): 7(2)-5(1)

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