- MFON PATRICK
Nigeria Professional Football League Champions Akwa United rounded off their pre-season preparations ahead of the new football season with a thrilling 1-1 draw against Kano Pillars on the final day of the 2021 President Cup tournament on Sunday in Abuja.
Akwa United, Kano Pillars, Sunshine Stars and Lobi Stars took part in the four club invitational pre-season tourney which was jointly organized by the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports and the office of the Special Assistant to the President on Sports Daniel Amokachi.
The Promise Keepers finished the tournament in third place after accumulating four points from three games comprising one win, one draw and one defeat.
Ezekiel Bassey’s first-half goal secured a 1-0 win over Lobi Stars before surrendering Adam Yakubu’s opener to lose 2-1 to Sunshine Stars on match-day 2
Coach Kennedy Boboye’s team were forced to a 1-1 draw in the last match of the tournament by eventual winners Kano Pillars who finished as the top team with seven points comprising two wins and one draw.
Kokoette Udoh’s 88th minute strike cancelled out Ezekiel Bassey’s first half goal to ensure both team share one point each.
Sunshine Stars were the runners-up with six points from three games while Lobi Stars ended the tournament without a point after losing all her matches.
The NPFL champions will return to Uyo on Monday to begin preparations for their title defense this weekend when they will play host to Kano Pillars at the Nest of Champions.
Reacting to his team’s performance at the tournament, Coach Kennedy Boboye said he has taken some positives from the Pre-season that will help him to better prepare his team for the 2021/2022 football season.