Babajide Adewunmi – EverBlazin
The 2021 edition of the annual Egba Youth Football Championship served off in Abeokuta on Friday as the community football clubs in the Egba region of Ogun State trade tackles on the day one of the Football showpiece.
Four matches from Groups A and B were played at the Muda Lawal Stadium, Asero, Abeokuta in what was a remarkable opening ceremony of the competition.
The first match of the day saw Powerline FC take on Idera United in what was a one sided affair from the blast of the kick-off whistle.
The experience of Idera United in the competition wasn’t enough as the new comers from Obada clearly dominated the match.
Fatai Olasheu fired home a shot in front of the 18 yards box to put the new comers ahead in the 29th minute of the game, leaving Idera United in search of a goal thereafter.
But another classy finish from Christopher Obinna shortly before the break meant that Idera would need to intensify their hunt for goals in the second half.
And there came the second half. Idera United looked fresh and hungry for goals at the initial stages of second thirty five but an own goal from the team’s goalkeeper Alani Taiwo in the 41st minute killed whatever hunger they have prior to the second half.
Babatunde Lukman wrapped things up in the 53rd minute, scoring the fourth goal of the game and as well confirmed the Powerline boys as the highest scoring side on the opening day.
The second fixture was the first group B game and it was between two teams from the health and transportation sectors of Ogun State, the Traffic Compliance And Enforcement Agency (TRACE) squaring up against Sacred Heart Hospital Football Club from Lantoro, Abeokuta.
Both sides were careful in their approach; perhaps they respected themselves. And this made the first half look so drab and bereft of actions. As a result of both sides’ conservation, the first half ended goalless.
Nothing didn’t change in the second half either and the two teams continued to nullify each other. It took a moment of slip up from the defense of the traffic wardens for Dipeolu Sodeeq to break the deadlock with just eight minutes left to play.
And as expected, TRACE kept their hope of salvaging the game alive but their aerial balls and long passes were curtailed by the Sacred Heart defense. 1-nil it ended between them.
Dream Team FC and AS Success were the two other teams from group A. Their match was the third on a sunny afternoon at the Asero stadium in Abeokuta.
Before the kick-off, both sides looked very athletic and enterprising. But as always, a winner must emerge.
It was AS Success who drew the first blood through their nimble footed winger, Solomon Olamilekan, who placed a solo shot beneath the arms of Dream Team’s goalkeeper.
It didn’t stop there. The new boys continued to mount pressure on Dream Team, playing some swashbuckling football from left, right and center.
Issa Ismail added to the tally in the 42nd minute to make it 2-nil and shortly after the second goal, Dream Team had a chance to reduce the deficit when an AS Success defender committed a cynical foul on its attacker in the box.
The Referee pointed to the spot as everyone in attendance rose to see whether the first penalty of the competition will be put at the back of the net.
Unfortunately for Dream Team, the penalty was played directly into the safe hands of the goalkeeper as well as the rebound. A huge round of applause was heard from the stands for the young goalkeeper.
And so it ended between 2-nil in favour of AS Success against the Dream Team.
The final match of the day saw two sides who played the 2020 edition of the EYFC lock horns, Egba African Diocese and Mabak FC.
It was a game the church boys would definitely want to forget in a hurry after two errors gifted Mabak’s Balogun Quadri two easy goals in the game.
The first goal came few seconds after the kick-off whistle after a long ball was launched into the Egba Anglican Diocese defence; the goalkeeper somehow let it slip into the feet of Balogun Quadri who in-turn moved the ball behind him and tapped into the open net.
While the second one was scored at the 31st minute by the same player. The scoreline forced the Egba Diocese coach to make a first half substation which wasn’t enough for them to avoid defeat.
Here are the Results in Full:
Powerline FC 4 – 0 Idera United
Dream Team 0 – 2 AS Success
Trace FC 0 – Sacred Heart Hospital FC
Egba Anglican Diocese FC 0 – 2 Mabak FC
Below are the fixtures for Saturday:
MAT FC vs Winners FC
Elere Adubi FC vs TACN FC
Favour FC vs Infinity FC
Samba FC vs Surveyors FC
Delta State To Host Next National Sports Festival
Winner of the 2020 National sports Festival, Delta State will play host to the next edition of the Festival in 2022.
Minister of Youth and Sports Development Chief Sunday Dare announced this while declaring closed the 20th edition of the Festival tagged Edo 2020 which ended in Benin on Wednesday.
“Congratulations to Delta State for emerging the overall winner of the Games of the 2020 National sports Festival. I’m glad to note that the Federal Government received bids to host the 21st edition of the National sports Festival in 2022 from 6 states namely: Delta, Ebonyi, Imo, Kaduna, Kano and Ogun.
Following the evaluation of the bids and the physical visitation to the prospective States, I hereby announce Delta State as the next host of the National sports Festival in 2022.
“I Congratulate the Government and people of Delta State for emerging the preferred State and wish them best of luck in the organisation of the 21st National sports Festival”
National Sports Festival, a tool for National unity – Dare
While giving an overview of the biennial games, the Honourable Minister stated “By and large, our expectations have been met as a Ministry.
The National Sports festival remains a strong tool for national unity which brings together young talents from across the length and breadth of the country. Apart from the spirit of sportsmanship, we have seen great display of talents and skills and cutting edge competition amongst our young athletes. Also, we’ve seen records were broken and excitement from the participants who had waited and trained for years to do this.”
The Minister who went round over 12 venues at the festival revealed that swimming is one of the sports where the country can win more than one medal at the Olympics. “This country should be one of the top swimming countries in the world, that is also one of the sports where you can easily win the highest number of medals.
The most important lesson is how we can develop swimming. When you look at the South-South and the Far North for example the Argungun Festival where people swim, it has always had potential. So we need to focus on swimming because we can get more than 10 medals from the Olympics.”
The Minister expressed delight in the athletes’ impressive performances, insisting that the Adopt an Athlete Initiative where some athletes were funded to train, get coaches as well equipment under private partnerships was paying off.
While commending the President of The Handball Federation of Nigerian, the Minister said “I have seen a high display of skills from our young boys and girls in handball, this country will start a handball program which could eventually result to Nigeria becoming world-beaters.
The Handball president is very innovative as he has been able to leverage private sponsorship which is critical for every single federation. This has made the Handball Federation one of the most successful Federations in the country”
Bayelsa State Director Of Sports Emerges PRO Of Association Of Directors Of Sports In Nigeria
Director of Bayelsa State, Bayelsa State Sports Council Sir, Braveman Wodi has been elected as the Public Relations Officer of the Association of States Directors of Sports in Nigeria.
Sir Wodi emerged the Public Relations Officer in an elections held last night in Benin City, Edo State.
The Director who is barely one year in office is the first Bayelsan to be elected into the executive board of Directors of the Association of Directors of Sports in Nigeria.
His election into the position is coming in the wake of Team Bayelsa’s impressive run in the ongoing National Sports Festival in Benin City, where he has successfully steered Bayelsa into third place with a total of one hundred and twenty two medals, forty one gold, thirty nine silver and forty three bronze medals.
Isaac O. Isaac of Abia State was elected as chairman Directors of Sports in Nigeria, also Bashari Ahmed Maizare will serve as vice chairman, Gboyega Makinde as secretary, Philip Nongu will occupy the position of the financial secretary.
Others are Musa Sule, Treasurer, Luka Isnafanus assistant secretary.
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