Sani Suleiman’s spectacular goal helped Akwa United to a 1-1 draw against Gombe United as they picked a crucial point on the road for the second time this season.

The Promise Keepers arrived at Pantami stadium – a venue they have recorded one win and three draws against the hosts, Gombe United in their four previous meetings.

The 2021 champions went into the game with the aim of doing the double over Gombe United – a team they defeated 1-0 in the first leg but fell behind seven minutes into the second-half after playing goalless in the first-half.

Striker Sani Suleiman levelled the scores in the 61st minute when he took on three defenders before sending an audacious left-footed cross over the goalkeeper and into the back of the net for his fifth goal in six matches since joining Akwa United in mid-season.

Late efforts by Seyi Oguntayo, Osoba Kabir, Damilare Johnson and Gerome Heutchou to snatch what could have been Akwa United’s first away win of the season were unsuccessful but they were able to improve their head-to-head record against Gombe United to 9 wins, 4 draws with just 3 loses in their last sixteen meetings.

In his post-match reactions caretaker coach Umar Abdullahi commended his players for their positive approach throughout the game but observed that it was a match his team should have won.

“In my opinion, we have thrown away two good points in this match because we came here with the hope of winning and we had the upper hand in terms of scoring opportunities during the course of the game but it didn’t happen and we had to settle for one point. So I want to use this medium to congratulate my players for their determination and fighting spirit which helped us to get this crucial point against Gombe United although it’s not exactly the result we wanted.

“At this point we just have to approach every match with that winning mentality, ensuring that we make the most of our chances in every match. We have to be ready to fight for every available point in all our matches because that is the only way we can rescue our season”.

Despite the one point on the road, the 2021 champions stay 18th on the log on 28 points from 26 matches and will next engage Plateau United in Jos this weekend.

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