2018 Aiteo Cup: Maigoro and Mustapha stole the show as Pillars earn a deserved victory over Rivers

Kano Pillars took a sweet revenge off Rivers Utd in the ongoing 2018 Aiteo Cup Group stages opener decided at the Soccer Temple, Monday evening.

The Sai Masu Gida found themselves a goal down as early as 10 minutes of the encounter when the Rivers state based team were awarded with a spot kick after Pillars defender, Joel Djondang fouled Osita Chikere inside the box.

Bernard Ovoke steps in and took his shot expertly to beat Pillars goalkeeper, David Obiazor the wrong way for the opener.

The first half ended 1 nil in favour of Rivers Utd.

Six minutes after the restart, 2017/2018 Nigeria Professional Football League goal king, Junior Lokosa leveled the scores for the Pride of Kano after he received a good cross down the flank.

Pillars looked the most dangerous side going forward in the second half but failed to get the needed cutting edge until club’s technical adviser, Ibrahim Musa Jugunu made some changes and brought in Yusuf Bala Maigoro and Mustapha Salisu to add some needed attacking instincts.

Their introduction pays off the bill as the pair were devastating all evening causing series of troubles to the Rivers Utd defense with their electrifying skills that caused their opponent to gave away two penalty kicks in the space of 15 minutes.

Club legend and Captain, Rabiu Ali were at hand to convert the resulting penalty kicks on both occasions.

As the game is nothing but going Pillars’s way, Rivers Utd had another idea as they keep on pushing until when they got their second and final goal of the evening from a corner kick.

In the other group C game decided this evening, Kwara Utd Whitewashed Abia Warriors blue black by five goals to one.

With the results after the first group games, Kwara Utd are top of the group with 3 points just as Pillars but with goals difference while Rivers Utd and Abia Warriors are occupying the third and fourth spot without a single point respectively.

Tomorrow would be observed as rest day and hostilities resumes on Wednesday with Pillars taking on Abia Warriors while Rivers Utd will trade tackles with rejuvenated Kwara Utd.

With the lackluster performance by Pillars in the first half, it is high time Coach Ibrahim Musa Jugunu starts giving the needed attention it deserves to his match winners in Mustapha Salisu and Yusuf Bala Maigoro.

By Isma’eel Abba Tangalashi

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