Enyimba were forced to a 1-1 draw by Bendel Insurance at the Mobolaji Johnson Arena on Wednesday.
Sadiq Abubakar’s spectacular strike was cancelled out by Divine Nwachukwu’s close range header as the two sides from group A delivered a blockbuster to open proceedings on day 3 of the NPFL Championship Playoffs.
Insurance were quicker off the block and created the early chances with Zaidu Ayuba, Sarki Ismail and Divine Nwachukwu involved in dangerous attacks.
But it was Enyimba who took the lead against the run of play with a sleek counter-attack culminating in Abubakar directing a spectacular curler into the far right.
Insurance, however, got their leveller thirteen minutes later from a free kick situation, Divine Nwachukwu heading in from five yards.
The second half wore a completely different complexion with Ikenna Cooper’s controlling midfield display giving Enyimba complete charge. Emeka Obioma’s header struck the bar with a header right after the restart before Uwana Asuquo headed straight at the keeper moments later. Substitute Chijioke Mbaoma fluffed two good chances while Olorunleke Ojo kept out Imade Osarenkho’s low drive at the other end of the field.
Imo Obot’s powerful free kick was tipped by Amas Obasogie, before the keeper positioned well to also prevent Ekene Awazie, Somiari Alalibo and Chibuike Nwaiwu as Enyimba turned on the heat in a frenetic end.
Finidi George’s Post Match Comments
After the game, head coach Finidi George took time to evaluate the team’s performance and the result. An audio clip of his reaction has been attached here.