After two away losses on Friday for the two Nigerian representatives in the CAF Confederations Cup, and a home loss for Plateau United in the Champions League on Sunday, it was left to Enyimba to restore some pride. The Aba club beat Rahimo of Burkina Faso 1-0 in the Champions League courtesy of a goal from Victor Mbaoma.
The Aba Elephants – two-time winners of the Champions League – withstood whatever pressure the home team threw at them but Fatai Osho’s men were resolute. The only goal came in the 78th minute when Mbaoma got on a cross from Anayo Iwuala and the substitute’s header went off the crossbar. Mbaoma came on for debutant, Tosin Omoyele, on the hour.
Rahimo had a shout for a penalty on 83 minutes but Nabil Yarou’s tackle was as clean as a whistle. Enyimba take a 1-0 victory back to Aba for the second leg, where they will be expected to progress.
In Jos, Plateau United fell to Tanzania champions, Simba FC, by a lone goal. The Nigeria Professional Football League champions dominated the game in patches but against an efficient side like Simba, there were always going to rue the wasted opportunities.
The visitors won a freekick on the edge of the box when Isah Ndala brought down Aishi Manila but John Bocco headed the resulting effort from Mohamed Hussein wide.
Oche Ochewechi had a shot saved in the 13th minute and then punched Nda’s header to safety a minute later and Abba Umar hit the crossbar. The first half ended goalless but Clatous Chama got Simba’s goal in the 55th minute, when he pounced on a rebound from goalkeeper Adamu Abubakar.
Sunday Adetunji had at least three gilt-edged chances in the second half to draw his team level but he wasted the chances. Coach Abdul Maikaba will hope his strikers get on their shooting boots in the second leg, which is now a mountain to climb.
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