Exciting Showdown As Remo Stars Clash With Sporting Lagos In Naija Super 8 Final

By Tambaya Julius, Abuja

As tow powerhouse teams battle for glory.

The stage is set for a pulsating showdown in the inaugural Naija Super 8 tournament final, as Remo Stars, the runners-up of the 2023 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL), lock horns with Sporting Lagos, a newly promoted NPFL side.

The much-anticipated clash is scheduled to take place on Sunday, promising a spectacle of football prowess and excitement.

Remo Stars booked their place in the final with a hard-fought 2-1 victory over Lobi Stars in the semifinals.

Displaying dominance right from the start, Daniel Ogunmodede’s boys controlled the match and came close to forcing an own goal in the 13th minute.

Lobi Stars’ danger man, Joseph Atule, threatened Remo Stars’ defense but was denied by a spectacular fingertip save from goalkeeper Kayode Bankole.

It was in the 24th minute when Remo Stars broke the deadlock, as Dena Akorli skillfully directed Isaac James’ precise cross into the bottom corner.

Lobi Stars responded with determination, with Atule’s powerful half-volley rattling against the upright in the 31st minute.

Bankole continued to showcase his brilliance, making another crucial save in the 40th minute to preserve Remo Stars’ lead going into halftime.

Just two minutes into the second half, Nduka Junior extended Remo Stars’ advantage with a well-timed header from a corner.

However, Lobi Stars found a lifeline when Nwaeze Boniface committed a handball in the box, leading to a penalty.

Atule made no mistake from the spot, securing his third goal of the tournament in the 62nd minute.

In a post-match interview, Remo Stars’ coach, Daniel Ogunmodede, expressed confidence in his team’s preparations and their pursuit of the championship.

He emphasized their effective defensive play and believed in their ability to clinch the trophy.

“We have analyzed Lobi Stars thoroughly, and we were well-prepared to counter any complacency.

Our boys showcased great control in the match and defended resolutely.

I have every assurance that we will emerge as winners,” said Ogunmodede.

Meanwhile, the battle between Akwa United and Sporting Lagos provided fans with a captivating spectacle.

Uche Collins had a golden opportunity to put Akwa United in the lead during the 20th minute but missed an open goal with his header.

Akwa United had their moments of dominance in the first half, with Cyril Olisema missing a sitter in the 36th minute and Sodiq Rilwan narrowly missing the target from the edge of the penalty box in the 37th minute.

However, they managed to break the deadlock in the 42nd minute when Olisema converted a controversial penalty.

Sporting Lagos emerged from halftime with renewed vigor, pressing for an equalizer.

They squandered a glorious chance when Saturday Okon failed to find the target with an open goal in the 48th minute.

Their persistence eventually paid off in the 54th minute, as Saturday redeemed himself by tapping home from close range after a brilliant cross from Jonathan Aluku.

Aluku then became the match winner in the 70th minute, heading home a cross to complete the remarkable comeback.

Akwa United came close to an equalizer in the 90th minute, but Meshack Dennis failed to convert the chance.

Sporting Lagos’ coach, John Offor, attributed their victory to a tactical adjustment made in the second half, which allowed his team to apply pressure on their opponents.

He also emphasized that his team is not burdened by the pressure to win the tournament, as they have already achieved their objectives for the season.

Offor expressed his team’s intent to enjoy themselves on Sunday and see what unfolds in the final.

The highly anticipated Naija Super 8 final will kick off at 5pm on Sunday, promising an enthralling contest for football enthusiasts.

Alongside the coveted trophy, there is a significant sum of money at stake.

In addition to the N3 million earned for each group and semifinal match, the tournament winner will be awarded a substantial N25 million, while the runner-up will receive N9 million.

The Naija Super 8 tournament is proudly organized by Flykite Productions in collaboration with MultiChoice Nigeria and sponsored by MTN, Hero Lager, DStv, GOtv, SuperSport, Moniepoint, Pepsi, and Custodian Assurance.

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About Senior Reporter 299 Articles
Julius is a Journalist BSc Holder in Mass Communication His Twitter handle is: @tambayajulius His Facebook Page is: @Julius Barnabas

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