FC IfeanyiUbah took on Abia Warriors in the second oriental derby at the fortress this season against there perennial rivals fondly called the Ochendo Boys, a side that has found its way on numerous occasions to force the scoreline to their favour as the Anambra Warriors has now failed to emerge victorious in any NPFL game pitting these two sides losing once and the points shared in all other encounters.
Coach Ladan Bosso retained nine of his starting eleven that secured a valuable point last Sunday in Port Harcourt against Rivers United with exception of Umar Faruq and Sadiq Abdulrazak who were replaced by Ikeokwu Patrick and Adegboyega Gabriel respectively.
The game started in a frenetic pace for the Anambra Warriors, as the push for the curtain raiser was turned up a notch in the early stages of the game and the NPFL Galacticos got that which they deserved as Captain Ikeokwu Patrick gained possession, gifted the ball to Daberechi and in a series of passing brilliance with Pere finally laying the ball to the overlapping Wasiu Jimoh on the right flank, who outpaced his marker (Emeka Isaac) and finally laying it to the skipper Ikeokwu to bury it into the goal on the dot of the 5th minute beyond the reach of former Goalkeeper Uche Okafor to send the Fortress into a frenzy as the remaining parts of the first half saw a couple of wasted efforts and near misses from both Daberechi and Pere Lector as the first half ended One-Nil in favour of FCIU.
The second period kicked off as the first ended but this time the Ochendo boys were in control of proceedings pressing and going for the kill to get an equaliser and that they did after Osia Felix couldn’t clear properly leading to a Throw-in which was taken and caused a goal mouth melee with Msonter the culprit as that was converted by Obi Samson in the 67th minute while Goalkeeper Bamba pick up an injury and was subsequently replaced.
With less than 30 minutes to go, it seemed like Abia Warriors would escape with a point until Ubong Williams clumsily handled the ball in the 88th minute of the game and up stepped Chidume Onyekachi to score the winner, but just like he did in the 2016 Federation Cup Final, our former Goalkeeper Okafor Uche saved from 12 yards as the Oriental Derby ended with both sides sharing the spoils.
The Anambra Warriors as a result of this game are now occupying 13th position on the log and will embark on a long trip to Maiduguri to face El Kanemi Warriors.