Bendel Insurance fought hard to defeat Heartland 1-0 in a Match Day 32 of the Nigeria Premier Football League in Benin City on Saturday.

Ismael Sarki scored the only goal of the match and sealed victory for Insurance in the 83rd minute at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium.

The goal was set up by Stanley Okorom who curled a freekick from 25 yards which Sarki smartly finished off to send the home fans into jubilation.

The tight game ended goalless after the first 45 minutes with Insurance strikers being wasteful in front of goal.

Within 51st and 53rd minutes of play, Meyiwa Oritseweyimi and Chisom Okereke missed two opportunities. Bendel Insurance head coach Monday Odigie having had enough of the misses, yanked off Okereke and sent on Vincent Okeke in his place.

In the 78th minute, Odigie made further changes to his playing personnel with Oritseweyimi, Evans Ogbonda and Divine Nwachukwu giving way for Austin Ogunye, Stephen Eghonghon and Chukwudi Meze.

The changes helped the Benin Arsenal to press for the winner which eventually came seven minutes to time.

Bendel Insurance now have 45 points after 32 games. Odigie’s men will now focus on their title defence of the Federation Cup in a Round of 64 match against Ogun State side, Stormers CS on May 1 before making the trip to Akure where they are expected to face Sunshine Stars in a Matchday 33 contest later in May.

David NPFL
April 27, 2024
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