Good morning Guys and Congratulations on our first three points, first clean sheet and a debut goal for one of our new signings. Our duel with Sunshine Stars went just nicely as we ensured the Akure Gunners left Calabar empty handed. They sit in the bottom half of the table- they’ll make do with that till at least midweek.
We did have questions with regards to line-up and it’s amazing that even when the LMC delegate tweeted the expected lineup, it was too erratic looking to be for real. The said lineup had six defenders and immediately you knew something was wrong with it.
Enyimba XI: Afelokhai, Ojo, Ikouwem, Okpako, Kester, Anaemena, Oladuntoye, Ogbonnaya, Leonard, Gata, Mfon Udoh.
The right lineup which I got from my sources is – Afelokhai, Ikouwem, Ojo, Okpako, Anaemena, Oladuntonye, Ibenegbu, Dimgba, Chukwude, Mustapha, Mfon Udoh. That’s 5 debutants- Udoh Ikouwem, Solomon Okpako, Isiaka Oladuntonye, Stanley Dimgba and striker Ibrahim Mustapha.
Ibrahim Mustapha got us the breakthrough and only goal of the game in the 21st minute when he skipped past a couple of challenges to bury beyond Ojo Olorunleke in the Sunshine goal. There wasn’t a lot by way of live updates on the LMC handle and the club’s official handle is probably yet to resume for the Season. So since we didn’t see the game, there’s not much to report by way of action.
But Theophilus Afelokhai had a great game in goal for us. He does mean business doesn’t he? I mean having seen the club sign Ghanaian International Goalkeeper, safe hands Theo is keen on securing his place as the club’s number one Goalkeeper. So time and time again he pulled off top drawer saves especially in the first half as the visitors threatened.
The match of the match however was the young ‘rookie’ at left back – Utin Ikouwem Udoh. We’ve waxed lyrical about this youngster on the blog here, a guy who came in from the club’s feeder team. There’s hardly anyone within football circles who isn’t fascinated by a player who came through the ranks and gets a look-in in the first team.
It’s a good start and a very good foundation for the new season. It’s a long way from here all the way to the Championship title but if there is anything results from the first match day taught us, it is that it would take consistent top performances to be top of the log by the end of the season.
It’s very much early days no doubt but we look headed in the right direction. Next up is Plateau United in Jos in midweek. They beat Remo Stars yesterday 2-1 by the way. This would be some season.