Idah U16 boys have emerged champions of the first edition of the YSFON-organized Attah Igala Unity Cup U16 Boys Soccer Championship after a 2-1 victory over Bassa counterparts in the finals in Idah on Sunday.
Hassan Ajeka and Raheem Akanbi scored from the penalty spot to give the hosts the deserved first half advantage. In a response in the second half, Idris Sani grabbed his fifth goal of the tournament for Bassa from the spot, though his lone effort was not enough to deny Idah the victory.
However, Dekina who finished third on log at the end of the round-rubbing tournament with seven points, won bronze.
Winning Coach of the Idah, Momoh Sheriff could not agree less with his charge as he rated the championship trophy a great achievement for his side and commended the organizers, YSFON for the high-quality competition.
“I feel on top of the world right now, this is a great and worthy achievement for us. I’m excited as our strategy to challenge the last minute penalty to our opponents worked perfectly in our favour in the long run,” Momoh said.
At the finals, the sponsor of the YSFON organized age-grade tournament, Hon. Surv. Emmanuel Omebije who doubles as the Deputy Speaker Kogi State House of Assembly, said he bankrolled the competition in quest to empower the youths through sports.
Omebije who expressed delight in the standard of competition, commended the organizers Youth Sports Federation of Nigeria and promised improved support next year.
Also speaking the tournament’s Director and YSFON National Vice President, Hon. Mustapha Allah-Dey commended the sponsor, participating teams among others for their cooperation, urging team to uphold the regulations of YSFON on age-grade competition and promised better organizing in the next edition.
Similarly, the Chairman, Kogi State Chapter of YSFON, Nda Umar has revealed that the success recorded in Idah will be replicated in other districts -Kogi West and Central of the state as the state body continues to lay structures for talents discovery.
The two finalists – Idah and Bassa have been rewarded with opportunity to represent the state in two yet-to-be-decided national competitions later in the year.
In a related development, twenty-three outstanding players have been selected from all the participating teams in the Attah Igala Unity U16 Boys Cup.
The selected players have equally been handed invitation to take part in a four-day football clinic/talents hunt organized by FIFA licensed agents of Portuguese giants FC Porto led by Graham Heydorn in collaboration with Youth Sports Federation of Nigeria.
According to the YSFON Deputy National Secretary, David Ehimony, the choice of Lokoja was owned to the foreign scouts’ in consideration for its security and state-of-the-art sports facilities.
The age-grade talents hunt screening to host players within the ages of 14-21 from the North Central Zone which began on Monday will last till Thursday.
Lists of selected players from Kogi East LGAs:
Bassa – Idris Sani, Mamoud Ali, Hassan Jimba, Yaqub Abdulkarim, Abdul Adamu, Alhassan Abdulrahaman, Girima Gwatana
Idah – Sunday Ejeh, Martins Enejele, Mohammed Kabir, Hassan Ajeka, Yusuf Amodu, Raheem Akanbi
Igalamela/Odolu – Monday Egbunu, Moses Salifu, Michael Salifu, Bashir Sani, Iko Siaka, Wahab Alhassan
Dekina – Mustapha Abdul, Onalo Philips, I.B. Sani, Idris Sani