Abuja - Sunshine Stars
revived their title aspirations following a tense 1-0 defeat of Abia Warriors
at the Akure Township Stadium on Sunday.
The victory means
the Akure club has now moved into second place with 53 points, but still five
points less than league leaders, Enyimba, who defeated Wikki Tourists 2-0 on
Sunday in Aba.
coach Kennedy Boboye named a match day squad without towering centre-back
Stephen Eze and striker Dele Olorundare while Kingsley Eduwo and Kabiru Ayinde
were restored to the starting line-up. Mohammed Chaona paired Kunle Odunlami in
the heart of defence in the absence of Eze.
The approach of
Abia Warriors to the game was evident in the way they played considering that
top-three scorers, Chisom Chikatara, Ifeanyi Onyeali and Ndifreke Effiong were
unavailable. The Kolanut Boy, as Chikatara is called, is bereaved after the
death of his mother last weekend while Effiong is just returning from international
duty with the Nigerian Under-23 men's national team and wasn't listed.
Also read: LMC warns erring Sunshine, Rangers fans
The three men
have accounted for 22 of the 32 goals scored by Abia Warriors this season,
which is 68% of their total goals so far. So it was always going to be
difficult to see where the goals would come from for Ladan Bosso's team.
It was Sunshine
Stars who got off the blocks faster and the pace of Prince Aggreh caused the
visitors all sorts of problems though the hosts turned out wasteful and just
could not make their chances count.
The second half
took same fashion as the first with Sunshine Stars dominating play and Abia
Warriors looking second best.
On the 58th
minute however, a crossed-ball into the goal area of Abia Warriors was poorly
dealt with by goalkeeper Chinedu Anozie under pressure from Adeniji. The keeper
dropped the ball and Adeniji made no mistake to fire it into the net forcing
Abia Warriors players to protest that the goal should not have stood.
The goal meant
that Adeniji ended his goal drought of more than a month since he last scored
for Sunshine Stars in the top flight in their 5-0 win over El-Kanemi on match
day 25 on August 23.
But one thing was
evident in the game - the total domination of play by Sunshine Stars. The loss
leaves Abia Warriors in seventh place and on 46 points.