Mohammed Suleiman opened his Sunshine Stars goal account and set up another for Wasiu Jimoh to hand the Owena Whales a 2-0 victory over Jigawa Golden Stars in a matchday 13 NPFL encounter at the Ondo State Sports Complex Sunday.
The win brings to an end a four-match winless run for the coach Kabiru Dogo charges and helped the side moved two places to 7th in the NPFL log with 19 points.
Sunshine Stars had the visitors under the cosh from the start, with Suleiman finding the back of the net inside the opening two minutes, however, the goal was chalked off for a foul on the bullish striker who had expected the play to continue for ball advantage.
Dazzling youngster Timileyin ‘Omo Jesu’ Ogunniyi almost tucked home into the bottom left from the resulting free-kick. While a desperate goal-line clearing header denied Suleiman from a well-executed bicycle kick in the 15′
Despite seeing little of the ball, Jigawa Golden Stars almost drew the first blood through Abdullah M’ Lala who blasted high from six yards after the hosts failed to clear their line in the 27′.
Two minutes later, towering goalkeeper, Olorunleke Ojo collected calmly from an unmarked Samuel Agba’s tame jab inside the area.
Suleiman again went close with another stunning bicycle kick that required a top of the drawer save from Kenneth Christopher to be kept out agonisingly at the half-hour mark as the hosts continued to dominate overwhelmingly.
Nevertheless, there was no denying the marauding man at the stroke of half-time: he raced in timely to smash home from Fuad Ekelojuoti’s lose the ball for Sunshine Stars’ 1-0 advantage heading into the break.
Five minutes into the restart, sleeky forward, Uche Ihuarulam went close with a one-time effort that missed that target by few inches from the edge of the area.
In the 55′ Suleiman’s fierce low drive rattled Christopher while Omo Jesu and Ekelojuoti could not get a proper connection to the rebound before the visitors cleared their line
The scoreline could have stood at 1-1 during a rare Jigawa Golden Stars advances in the break in the 63′, but Samuel Agba fluffed his line to a goalmouth miss with Ojo already drawn out of position.
Teku Ronaldo as Jimoh is fondly called, came off the bench to tuck home brilliantly against the run of play from Suleiman’s assist and sealed the win for the Akure landlords 10 minutes from time.
The Akure landlords next visit Gombe for a matchday 14 meeting with Wikki Tourists of Bauch on Sunday.
Coach Kayode Julius who faced the media in place of Dogo after the game was quick to attribute the convincing to quality in depth of the Owena Whales.
Julius stated: “We resolved to start winning with this game after the Lobi’s game and we are happy to have achieved that today.
“Today, Sunshine Stars have one of the best teams in the country with three quality players in each position. That’s while Suleiman, Jimoh and others are able to step up and deliver in the absence of Israel Abia (league top scorer).”
Sunshine XI | Ojo; Abe (Adeyemi), Olulayo, Akpojubweuvwo, Akande; Hilary, Fatokun, Omojesu, Ekelojuoti (Jimoh), Ihuarulam (Yusuf), Suleiman
Sunshine Subs | Suleiman; Omaka, Adejubu, Silas
Caution | Hilary 73′