Defending champions Akwa United are through to the quarter final of this year’s Aiteo Cup after a hard fought 1-0 victory over Kogi United at the Enyimba International Stadium in Aba on Wednesday.
Striker Victor Mbaoma scored the decisive goal in injury time when he tap in Barnabas Imenger’s delightful cross into the net to secure all three points and book his team’s passage to the last eight of the competition.
Coach Abdu Maikaba maintained the same starting eleven that defeated Wikki Tourists on Matchday one and the gamble paid off as they recorded their fourth straight win in the competition scoring fourteen goals.
Kogi United went into the game with great determination after they forced Nasarawa United to a goalless draw in their opening match. The Nigeria National League side gave a good account of themselves and were able to frustrate the champions in the first half.
Akwa United increase the tempo of the game and dominated play in the second half but they were unable to convert their many scoring chances. Coach Abdu Maikaba introduced Ubong Friday, Cyril Olisema and Barnabas Imenger into the game and their introduction made positive impact in the game.
The Champions thought they were in front when Striker Victor Mbaoma outran two of his markers to put the ball in the back of the net but his effort was ruled out for offside.
The Promise Keepers’ persistent pressure paid off deep into injury time when Gabriel Wassa released Barnabas Imenger on the left flank. Imenger delivered a delightful cross into the box for Victor Mbaoma to score his fourth goal in four games.
The Uyo based side are on course to defend the title they won last year and with two wins in their opening two games in Group D, Coach Abdu Maikaba’s team will finish as Group leaders if they win or draw against Nasarawa United in their last Group game on Friday.