The Solid Miners leapfrog to the top of the Nigeria Professional Football League 2020/21 season after a fierce battle with Heartland at the Dan Anyiam Stadium, Owerri on Sunday.
This is the first time both sides met at the newly refurbished Dan Anyiam Stadium Owerri Imo State, it was the Naze Millionaires who won by two goals to one.
It was rather a different tale when the Solid Miners secured the three points on deck, thanks to Silas Nwankwo’s winner in the 74th minute.
The game started on a frantic pace as the Solid Miners threw everything into the game right from the blast of the whistle.
Their urgency paid-off as Chinedu Ohanachom latched unto a well-placed Tebo Franklin’s pass to glide the ball past Ikechukwu Ezenwa in goal for Heartland for the first goal of the game on the 14th minute.
Silas Nwankwo had the opportunity to make it two moments later but he could not find the net as Nasarawa United continued to dominate play.
The energetic attacker continued to pressurise the home side as his speed and tricks unsettled the host.
After ringing in some changes by Fidelis Ilechukwu, Heartland restored parity when substitute, Shedrack Oghali, equalized for Heartland on the 62nd minute.
Two minutes later, goalkeeper, Ikechukwu Ezenwa, was to make way for Chijioke Ejiogu in a forced substitution.
And on the 74th minute, Silas Nwankwo found the back of the net after some beautiful work from substitute, Adamu Hassan, who breezed past his marker to set up his striking partner as Nasarawa United secured their second consecutive win from two games.
Speaking after the game, Nasarawa United Technical Adviser, Bala Nikyu, told journalists that it’s not time for celebration yet.
“You can’t start dreaming after two matches out of thirty-eight. Even at twenty matches, you can’t start dreaming as anything can still happen.”
The Solid Miners’ winning goal scorer and Man-of-The-Match, Silas Nwankwo, said he believed he has more to offer as a striker despite missing plenty scoring chances in the game today.
“I am very grateful as it is not easy to be voted the MOTM in a game like this, especially coming away from lafia. I am indeed grateful, and I believe the door to keep scoring has now opened up for me.”
Nasarawa United will next play-host to Kano Pillars at the Lafia City Stadium on Matchday three of the 2020/2021 Nigeria Professional Football League.