A spirited second period display was not enough to undo the sloppiness of the first half as Sunshine Stars suffered a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Plateau United on NPFL match day 16, Thursday.
The hosts had their noses in front at the New Jos City Stadium as early as the seventh minute through midfield metronome, Oche Ochowechi who drilled into the bottom left from the edge.
Mustapha Yuga doubled Plateau United’s advantage in the 21st minute from the penalty spot, after a ruffle in the area that got Olawale Abisoye booked.
Then 10 minutes later Sunshine Stars had an appeal for a penalty of their own waved away following a reckless challenge on Sadeeq Yusuf in the box. Yusuf’s game was cut short as a result with Tolu Oluwole taking his place.
Things got from bad to worse for the Owena Whales in the 35′ as Uche Onwuasonaya finished easily from a team move for United’s third goal of the contest.
Sunshine Stars resumed the second half of the game with renewed energy, and carved open their opponents twice within ten minutes of the restart; Ayo Adejubu volleying high inside the area before Dele Ajiboye denied Oluwole from a point blank.
In the heat of exchanges, captain Abe Sunday ensured the scoreline stayed as it was with a decisive intervention before Adejubu blasted high from an acute angle after twisting and turning through some markers.
The injury worries howerver doubled late on in the game, as Ajani Ibrahim could not also complete the game and moments after Oluwole smashed wide at goal mouth off Abe’s corner kick.
Sunshine Stars’ domination in the second period produced a consolation in the 90′ off the foot of utility player, Kehinde Adeyemi who powered home exquisitely for the game to end 3-1.
COACH GBENGA OGUNBOTE’S POST MATCH QUOTES 🎙
“We lost the game to fatigue, the team came in very late and they weren’t themselves in the first 45 minutes; we lost the game in the first half.
“We still have about 22 games to play, the league will not be won this week, neither will it be won this month; as far as am concerned it is not yet won and lost. We will go back and make amends so we can come back stronger.”
SUNSHINE XI | Suleiman; Abe (C), Akande, Abisoye, Edozie, Adeyemi, Ogonna, Yusuf (Oluwole 38′) Adebayo (Begbaji 54′), Ajani (Akobundu 88′) Adejubu (Adeniyi 78′)
UNUSED SUBS | Okafor; Oladuntoye, Yakub
CAUTION | Abisoye 21′ Adeyemi 75′ Begbaji 79′