Kano Pillars dented Kwara United FC’s title aspirations with a 2-0 thumping in a Matchday 16 fixture of the 2020/2021 NPFL season. The encounter held at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium in Kaduna.
Captain Rabiu Ali opened the scoring when he converted a 61st-minute penalty after David Ebuka was brought down in the box. Late in the game, substitute Usman Babalolo dropped a looping header to beat Dele Aiyenugba in second-half added time for the team’s second goal.
Both sides have endured three matches without a victory before the tie, with Pillars drawing the last game at home against Rangers International, while losing away to Dakkada FC of Uyo before being whipped by Abia Warriors.
Despite being an open game from the beginning with half-chances for both sides, the Sai Masu Gida were eager to make amends and resume winning games and deserved to win as the visiting Harmony Boys were saved on four different occasions by Aiyenugba who stood solid and tall in Kwara United’s goal. The game saw the Harmony Boys dominate the first few minutes before Pillars swung into action.
The home side first had a six-minute penalty appeal waved away and shortly after, Aiyenugba was called to action as he tipped a rasping shot from Nwagua Nyima.
The former Enyimba goaltender also saved a free-kick from Auwalu Ali Malam followed by another save from a Ali Rabiu shot. Pillars had another penalty appeal waved away in the 66th minute when defender Mustapha Jibrin appeared to have been blocked from getting to the ball by a Kwara United defender.
Speaking after the match, Pillars Coach, Ibraheem Musa said they worked on their errors against Abia Warriors hence they were able to play better and secure a win. He said despite not getting what they wanted in the first half, they continued to push until the goals came.
For Kwara United Head Coach, Abdullahi Biffo, the team gave their best but were let down by poor marksmanship. “The boys fought but we couldn’t convert our chances. We will pick it up from here go back and work on our attack.”