John Jerome’s brace help Kogi United subdue Jigawa Golden Stars

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John Jerome’s double helped Kogi United claim an important 2-1 win over Jigawa Golden Stars in the last game of the Nigeria National League, NNL season on Sunday.

Kogi United

The match played at the Confluence Stadium, Lokoja on Sunday saw the visiting Jigawa Stars coming out with a game of a spoiler knowing that Kogi United needs the three match points to keep their status in the league.

And they displayed that as they almost took the lead midway through the first half when Rahaku Adamu snatched a weak headed back pass from Tenimu Abubakar in front of goal but goalkeeper Ogundare Detan rushed out to deny him the glaring chance to score.

The Confluence State club sensed the danger posed from that and stepped up their game which resulted to their first goal in the 21st minutes.

Mayaki Ismail collected a loose ball down the left flank, laid a good pass to John Jerome who wasted no time in placing the ball in the net far from Jigawa’s keeper Savior Atoba’s reach.

All effort for the Wada Boys to increase the tally proved abortive as the Dutse based side defended with almost everyone on the pitch.

Jigawa made two quick changes in the restart of the second stanza and that paid off for them as one of the substitutes, Joshua Abah capitalized on defensive lapses for the home side to level the game within four minutes in resumption.

The boys of coach Tijani Shama would have been in front had their striker not missed his target.

But Kogi United rose to the occasion again to get the needed winning goal in the 78th minutes through Jerome who was at the best place to collect a fine pass from Ashadi Destiny and sprinted down intonthe box before blasting a shot into the far corner.

While describing the victory as hard earned from a tough game, Head Coach of Kogi United, Fatai Osho praised his boys for their zeal and doggedness to get the job done.

“Yes, we expected this kind of performance from Jigawa, because they had nothing to lose, they were more relaxed, I expected them to play very well, but we thank God our boys were able to rise up to the occasion and we are happy about the result.”

Asked whether the match was his worst in charge of the Wada Boys, Osho said his boys were to be commended for their fight back as they Dutse based side didn’t allow the game to flow with their defensive tactics.

“I mean we have to give it to the boys today, they played very well, I don’t know what you expect when you play against a team that had about seven players in the box all through and for us to have outwitted them and get those needed goals, we should actually commend them.

The former Remo Stars and Supreme Court FC’s handler expressed optimism ahead of next season as he disclosed that only few changes are expected to be made he’s ready to maintain continuity.

“Definitely we should be a team to look out for next season, we are not dropping much from this players, we want to capitalize on what we achieved in the second round and get a better team.

Osho however charged the league body (NNL) to be more transparent in disposition of its activities for the league to improve to a higher level.

“We have to be sincere with ourselves, this league organizers have a lot to do, a situation where O and D will determine the faith of the league is not helping the league, what happened this season is not peculiar to this season, it has been happening every year, there’s no gain to lie to ourselves, we know what is right in this country and the moment we start doing that we won’t have any problem it doesn’t happen anywhere in the world where with a match or two to go, we have to wait for two months to finish the league, that’s not too good for the game in our country I believe we have men of credibility at the NNL and that’s what they should not lose,” he said.