Heartland’s Nigerien striker Zeidine excited with win on debut
Nigerien attacker Zeidine Usman Ahimeye has cited that his warm welcome and show of love on him by Heartland players and officials are the reasons he has settled down seamlessly at the club and was able to lead them to a crucial home win.
Zeidine turned himself to fans’ favourite when he netted the match-winner in the 76th minute from the spot after the referee had ruled that his teammate, Abiodun Thompson was tripped by Go Round defender, Ebuka Akobundu in the 18-yard box and the attacker informed npfl.ng that he was confident he would tuck the penalty kick beyond the reach of the visitors’ goalkeeper, Stanley Nwabali.
He said it was not difficult for him to pick his spot and hit it as hard as possible after he urged his teammates to allow him to take it. The Nigerien striker believes that the win will boost the Naze Millionaires’ confidence levels to battle for top-flight safety at the end of the season.
“I will say I am really happy with the way I was welcomed by Heartland players and officials when I joined the team,” Zeidine informed npfl.ng.
“It was this that made me settle down quickly and it was this that made me give my best to the team even in my first match. Playing in Heartland is another experience for me having played in the French second division and Kazakhstan and I am happy to contribute my quota to my new team.
“I know that from here we are going to start winning our games after we have been able to put an end to our unimpressive results. I had already made up my mind that I wanted to play the spot kick and it was the reason I went to pick up the ball immediately the penalty kick was awarded.”
The attacker who has had stints in the French league and in Kazakhstan expressed that with hard work, dedication and discipline Heartland will be able to spend another season in the premier league beyond this
He charged his teammates to ensure that they remain united and strive to work towards the common goal of ensuring that Heartland get improved results in their remaining league matches this season while urging that they should not lose hope even though the odds might be against them now.
“We will continue to work harder with dedication and discipline with which we have been playing for some time now and we know that with that we are going to escape the relegation zone,” Zeidine continued.
“We can’t afford to think that we can’t make it when we still have many matches to negotiate before the end of the season. We need to remain focused. When we are united and work very hard we can achieve our set objective.”
The Nigerien will be hoping that Mehmet Tayfun’s men will be able to replicate similar form when they face Enugu Rangers (away) this weekend and Enyimba (home) next Wednesday in the two remaining matches before the Russia 2018 World Cup break.