It was a dominant display by the wards of coach Olugbenga Ogunbote especially the West African imports as reigning national Aiteo cup champions, Rangers International of Enugu on Sunday, April 28, 2019, inside the main bowl of Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium hammered F.C Star Plus of Ngwo 4-1 to reclaim the Enugu State FA/Aiteo cup it lost last year.
Rangers who lost the trophy to Crime Busters F.C in 2018 started the match on a purposeful note with Kelvin Itoya and Seka Pascal pulling the strings and were 2-0 up going into the interval.
Ivorian import, Issif Traore scored his second goal in two matches as he rose above others to nod home a Kelvin Itoya inviting corner kick on 13 minutes while pint-sized, Bright Silas connected home an Adun Osamudiamwen’ cut-back after out running his marker on 37 minutes.
The NPFL side continued where it left off at the start of the second stanza with substitute Nigerien, Ousmane Zeidine combining well with his fellow francophone import, Seka and before long, had his name on the score sheet as steeled his nerves to dispatch from the spot on 53rd minute after a handball incident was sported by the referee against the state armature side.
Pascal Seka made it 4-0 in the 70th minute after he was freed on goal by substitute, Ifeanyi Egwim while Ekezie Chinweike reduced the tally for F.C Star Plus on 84 minute through a well struck penalty kick after Adun was adjudged to have handled the ball inside the box.
The scoreline would have been more embarrassing for the armature side that dethroned last year’ winners, Crime Busters, had Seka and Zeidine been more clinical when they had the goal keeper at their mercy on 72, 74 and 75 minutes.
Speaking after the match, Rangers coach, Olugbenga Ogunbote expressed joy over the victory noting that his team played well and deserved the victory.
“It was a good victory after the shock of last year and it is the beginning of defense to the NFF/Aiteo cup we won last year. We are going to re- strategies for the national as we know it is going to be tough. The goals would have been more but for the wastefulness by my attackers,” Ogunbote said.
In his words, F.C Star Plus gaffer Anistar Izuikem said that his players played according instruction but meet a tough team in Rangers.
“As far as am concerned, we played our final against Giant Brillars in the semifinal because our aim was to qualify for the national and which we did. Remember I told you after our match against Crime Busters FC that we must win our semifinal match to reach the national. We are going to prepare well and correct the lapses we discovered against Rangers so that we can do well at the national level,” Izuikem said.
The giant trophy was later presented to the captain of Rangers, Okey Odita by the executive governor of Enugu state, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi who was ably represented by the permanent secretary in the ministry of Youth and Sports, Barrister Mrs. Ani Ngozi Henrietta.