Lobi Stars Football Club on Sunday secured a slim 1-0 victory against visiting Niger Tornadoes FC to maintain their Group B leadership in the 2022/2023 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) .
There was barely nothing to separate the two sides in the high tempo Match Day 16 game in Jos until the lone goal.
The match played at the New Zaria Road Stadium saw Francis Odinaka scoring in the 48th minute to hand the Makurdi-based Lobi Stars the three crucial points.
Lobi Stars’ Chief Coach, Baba Ganaru, later said he was grateful to God for granting his side the victory that kept them on course to achieving their target.
Ganaru described the match as a very good encounter but a difficult one.
“We drew against them in the first round and they came to Jos with a game plan to get a result.
“We did very well. Our boys played very well and we showed very good character.
“Our main objective is to qualify for the Super Six and if you look at it, we are very much on course.
“We are left with two matches to play and we need only three points from the two matches.
“I urge my players to always concentrate, they should not lose focus in the run-in because it is like a marathon race and every point we gain is very important,” he said.
Odinaka, the goal scorer, on his part said he was overwhelmed with joy for scoring his first goal for Lobi Stars.
The defensive midfielder said that he was happy that God used him to grant his team victory in a very important match.
He said his coach had always told them that “each match has its strategy” and that they should always give their best because “every match is a final” if they want achieve their target.
“In as much as we didn’t score many goals today, the one we scored we made sure that we secured it.
“I am working with an experienced coach who is one of the oldest in the league. He saw something in me that I didn’t know I have.
“Moving me from a defender to a defensive midfielder has helped me to establish myself in the team.
“He advised me to keep going forward and today it paid off,” Odinaka said.