Abia Warriors FC on Sunday defied heavy downpour to secure their maximum three points, beating hard-fighting Lobi Stars 2-1 at the Umuahia Township Stadium.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the rain started just as the two teams retired into the dressing rooms after a one-all scoreline at the end of the first half of the game.
The rain persisted with greater intensity, leaving the pitch waterlogged as the teams resumed play for the second half.
Abia Warriors FC dominated play, pushing the game to its opponent’s half.
Lobi Stars made a few incursions into Abia Warriors vital goal area as both sides struggled to keep the ball afloat on the wet pitch.
The pressure mounted on Lobi Stars defence, by Abia Warriors paid off in the 85th minute when Chinedu James conceded an own goal with a header in a futile attempt to clear the ball.
Coach Evans Ogenyi of Lobi Stars was furious with the outcome of the game.
“Go and report what you saw here and do your analysis of the match,” Ogenyi said.
Coach Abdullahi Biffo of Abia Warriors, in his remarks, said that he was impressed with the performance of his team, especially for taking the game to their opponents half.
“I give kudos to the players. Their reaction in the second half was very massive even though the Lobi team played better.
“They came all out strongly and defended very well until they conceded the own goal.
“But I still give it to my boys because of the pressure they mounted on Lobi,” a visibly-elated Biffo said.
The coach said that the outcome of the match and the away draw with FC Ubah on Wednesday had raised the confidence of the team to aim for the league title.
“When you play and do not win, you will be under pressure; the results of these two matches have removed the pressure from us and we can now work to clinch the league trophy,” he said.