Former champions, Rangers International FC of Enugu Sunday recorded a 1-0 away win against Jigawa Golden Stars in one of the matchday 3 fixtures of the 2020/2021 Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL.
It was counter-attacking football at its best inside the main bowl of Ahmadu Bello stadium, Kaduna, as coach Salisu Yusuf’ wards of Rangers International F.C did a quick one over coach Gilbert Opana’ boys to snatch all three points at stake in a match day 3, NPFL 2020/2021 fixture for its second win of the season.
The home lads were pressing for the opening goal of the highly entertaining encounter at one end of the pitch but a slip saw Shedrack Asiegbu clear from his side’ box which found Abia Israel that out foxed his marker to release strike partner, Ajayi Femi who ran with the ball for a long stretch before blasting past an impressive, Godwin Paul on 77 minute for the only goal of the match.
Both sides had started the encounter on a slow note probing each other’s rear with little success but the visitors soon gained confidence and dominance but Godwin Paul stood between the ‘Flying Antelopes’ and a harvest of goals.
Coach Yusuf showed his mastery of the game when he made two first half substitutions just a little after the half hour mark and for the last ten minutes of the half, four chances went begging with the agile Godwin Paul, blocking, parrying, pushing and clutching goal bound efforts from the likes of Kenechukwu Agu, Chinonso Eziekwe and Chidiebere Nwobodo.
On 57 minutes, Musa Kalla was on target as some neat interchange of passes opened up Rangers backline but his effort that was headed for the bottom of the net was blocked out by Ugochukwu Ugwuoke to the relief of the travelling lot.
On 61 and 65 minutes, Chinonso Eziekwe and Abia Israel came close to breaking the deadlock but experienced, Godwin Paul, was the reason the ball failed to find its way into the net.
Three minutes to the end of the encounter, Israel Abia saw his effort hit the side net after a neat interchange of passes released him to try his luck.
Rangers will next play neighbours, F.C Ifeanyiubah in a match day 4 fixture inside the main bowl of Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium, Enugu on Wednesday, January 13, 2021, behind closed door in accordance to LMC/PTF/NCDC Covid-19 health protocols.