NPFL U-15: Olakunle's brace fire ABS to top spot

By Tobi Samuel

ABS FC continue their impressive run in the ongoing NPFL Under-15 Promises tournament on Tuesday at the Osogbo City Stadium with an emphatic 2-0 victory over Sunshine Stars who made their debut in the championship.

Matchday 2 action in Group C produced just one victory, while MFM FC and Remo Stars boys shared the spoils in the second game that ended 1-1.

ABS FC captain Olusegun Olakunle's second half brace helped the Saraki Boys beat Sunshine Stars 2-0. Sunshine Stars got their baptism of fire in the tournament after being drawn-bye on Matchday 1 on Monday.

After a scoreless first half in the tension-soaked game which Sunshine Stars dominated, ABS captain inspired his side with his brace in the second half. He volley from 25 yards to open scoring in the 53rd minute and completed his brace in the 71st minute with a beautiful freekick from 30 yards.

ABS FC are top of the group with six points after two games. They have scored three goals and kept clean sheets in both games.

"I am excited we won, it was a bit difficult for us in the first half. I am happy for the two goals and I hope to score more goals in the tournament. We played more as a team because our coach has warned us against individual play. We are not here to impress as individuals but win as a team," Olakunle who attends Olulade Junior Secondary, Ilorin said to npfl.ng after the victory.

In the second game, MFM FC players and officials left the stadium disappointed after a dramatic 1-1 draw against Remo Stars. Both teams lost their opening games on Monday. MFM fell 0-1 to ABS while Remo Stars got spanked 0-3 by Shooting Stars.

Remo Stars got the first attempt in the encounter when Jonathan Olateju's freekick went inches wide from goal in the fifth minute. Eight minutes later, MFM goalkeeper Oladunni Habeeb saved Qudus Rasheed's freekick. MFM created the last scoring opportunity in the first half when Atoyebi Gideon let fly from distance but Remo goalkeeper Taiwo Moshood stayed alert to stop the attempt as the first half ended goalless.

The second half began with both sides chasing for the opening goal. Atoyebi failed to connect Eniayewu Hammed's cross from the left channel in the 43rd minute. Atoyebi spurned another opportunity to open scoring in the 52nd minute, as Remo Stars goalkeeper Moshood denied his attempt from 10 yards.

MFM's Chibuchi Nwaorgu finally broke the deadlock in the 61st minute to put the Olukoya Boys into the lead. Remo Stars responded immediately and levelled scores eight minutes later through second half substitute Gabriel Akiode.

The Lagos club then missed the glorious opportunity to secure their first win at the death of the game. Remo Stars defender Olumade Sodiq handled the ball inside the box in additional minute and the referee awarded a late penalty to MFM. Remo Stars goalkeeper, Moshood was the hero for his side as he stopped Ibrahim Danladi's spot kick.

Remo Stars head coach, Daniel Ogunmodede says he was impressed with his boy performance in the second half.

"I think the boys performance improved compare to yesterday game. They were also jittery in the first half today but I was impressed with their performance in the second half especially when MFM scored. Kudos to our goalkeeper for the amazing late save. We have to work on the boys' confidence ahead of the next game," Ogunmodede said to npfl.ng on Tuesday.

Matchday 3 fixtures will hold on Wednesday morning. Sunshine Stars will face MFM from 8am before ABS FC face Shooting Stars at 10am.

         

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