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By Wale Mustapha
Kogi United attacker John John has expressed his disappointment over his side’s 2-1 defeat to Sokoto United in the Matchday 18 of Bet9ja Nigeria National League, NNL clash on Saturday.
The match played at the Giginya Memorial Stadium, Sokoto saw Kogi United taking the lead inside eight minute of the game when Idris Muye arrived on time to jab in John John’s cross from the right flank.
The midfielder could have doubled the lead for the Confluence club in the 32nd minutes from a similar cross from John but skied his effort.
Salisu Ogbe rescued situation for the visitors with a minute to end the first half when parried Anas’ free kick to corner.
Atmosphere of the stadium became tensed at half time as the fans of the home team held the match officials and Kogi United players hostage for over 8 minutes preventing them from entering the dressing room.
On resumption of play, Kogi United were pegged back to defend for larger part of second half as the hosts were encouraged to come at them with the aid of match officials.
Just as when Kogi United thought they would be going back to Lokoja with the maximum points, center referee Baba Mohammed thought otherwise,he awarded a questionable spot kick for the hosts in the 79th minutes after he picked a foul from nowhere against Abubakar Tenimu even after he had cleared a cross into Kogi United’s box.
Salisu Ogbe parried Mohammed Anas’ spot kick but Abubakar Suleiman headed in the rebound in the 85th minutes for the hosts.
Sokoto United’s second goal came inside nine minutes of added time when the duo of Salisu Ogbe and Tenimu were held in the box to allow Mohammed Gazzali to jab in the ball from a goal-mouth scramble.
John who captained Kogi United against his former employer is adamant that Saturday’s 1-0 defeat by Sokoto was a bitter pill to swallow adding that the Sokoto fans’ hostility aided the hosts to claim victory.
The forward however maintained that Kogi United would bounce back when they take on Mighty Jets next Saturday in Lokoja.
“It was unfortunate to have lost a game like this, despite the way we played but we thank God we were able to get out of stadium safely.
“It’s totally unacceptable, it’s my former club but what we experienced today was anti football, they were too hostile at us even after beating us with the help of match officials.
“But we will have to leave it there, it’s over with the game, we will build on this and get it well against Mighty Jets,” he said.
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