Four time Nigerian professional football league champions, Kano Pillars and the current NPFL champions, Plateau United squared up on Saturday evening in the ongoing inaugural Sharu Rabiu Inuwa Ahlan’s preseason tournament holding in the Ancient City of Kano.
The game dubbed to be the clash of the titans due to the pedigree of both teams lit up as early as the second minute of the match when Nazifi Yahaya dribbled through Plateau United’s defense only for him to be fouled by the goalkeeper just outside the box and the referee was right there at the spot to do the needful as he issued the erring Plateau defender a yellow card and a free kick to Pillars from which Captain, Rabiu executed the first chance at scoring.
Pillars dominated most of the first half with series of attacks from the likes of Nyima, Ali and Nazifi although United’s defenders couldn’t keep them at bay their goal keeper ensured he kept them from scoring.
In the other hand, former Pillars man, Amos Gyang almost scored against his former employers as he dribbled down the left flank and fired in a direct short towards Danladi Isah.
Gyang reckless challenge on Ali at the edge of United’s 18 yard box resulted in him being yellow carded while Pillars were awarded with a direct free kick.
Ali took his kick perfectly well and the keeper parried for a Corner kick.
Pillars efforts finally paid off as early as the 21st minute when the lively Nazifi Yahaya scored from a diving header via Ibrahim Alhassan’s assist from the corner kick.
The game took some magnitude as United gathered some momentum by pushing more upward in searching for an equaliser.
The Champions showed their stuff as Michael Ohanu scored from a free header through corner kick.
The first half ended goalless as the scores were tied as 1-1.
Pillars scored their second and the eventual winning goal immediately after the restart through Nzube Anaezemba who struck with a powerful shot from outside the box via Ali’s pass.
The former Rivers United man was lively throughout the game with some glimpses of passes and overall, eye catching performance and he showed that he can be a sure replacement for former Pillars midfield maestro, Mathew Ifeanyi.
United dominated the last few minutes of the game with series of attacks but Pillars back four adequately dealt with each of them as finding spaces to penetrate proved difficult for the Tin City side.
In the other fixtures played yesterday, El Kanemi Warriors put Kano Eleven to the sword as they walloped them by 7 goals to 2.
While NPFL new comers, Kwara United played out a 1-1 draw with neighbours, Niger Tornadoes.