The 2022/2023 Nigeria Women Football League (NWFL) Premiership Super 6 continued on Wednesday as Robo Queens kissed its quest for title goodbye after a 1-0 loss to holders Bayelsa Queens in Asaba.
In a similar fashion to its 2-0 loss to Rivers Angels in their opener, the Lagos Landladies started against Bayelsa on a bright note, fighting to avoid an early exit from the title playoffs at Stephen Keshi Stadium.
After a goalless first half, Emmanuel Osahon’s side almost broke the deadlock in the second period of the match but Esther Onyenezide couldn’t finish a one-on-one chance with Monle Omini in goal for the Prosperity ladies.
Instead of finishing off a good chance, Onyenezide decided to round up the goalie allowing the defenders of the Yenegoa-based side to recover and was eventually wasted.
Flourish Sabastine broke the deadlock in the 57th minute as she finished off a fine chance to bag the winner for Domo Okara’s side.
The slim win handed Bayelsa Queens a boost in their race for title ahead of their final Group A showdown with Rivers Angels on Friday.
Meanwhile, Confluence Queens stunned Edo Queens 1-0 in the evening match to make Group B interesting at the same venue.
A highly dominated game by Moses Aduku’s side ended in a defeat as the Lokoja-based side put up a solid defensive display plus breathtaking heroic saves from goalkeeper, Linda Jiwaku.
After a harsh tackle on Fagbenro Daniella by Omotoke Odueke in the first half resulting in the former being stretched off, coach Ogbonda Whyte introduced Chukwuamaka Osigwe who decisively changed the tide of the game.
Just five minutes into her introduction, Osigwe scored the winning goal with her first chance of the match in the 56th minute.
The Benin City-based side tried to get the equalizer with the coach Aduku bringing on Ogundeko Tosin, Mafisere Kafayat, Moses Esther, Alice Ogebe, and Godwin Eunice to beef up the attack but keeper Jiwaku who made no fewer than nine saves denied them till the end.
The win resurrected Confluence Queens’ chance to fight for a top-two finish and a possible last four spot in the knockout stage.
On the other hand, the defeat means Edo Queens will have to defeat the host team, Delta by three goals margin to go top of the Group B.
WHAT THEY SAID
Robo Queens coach, Emmanuel Osahon: “I am far okay. For me, the officiating was okay. My girls were just careless and that’s just it. It’s a glaring thing. Against Rivers Angels, we were the ones doing the playing while our opponents were the ones doing the scoring. Today too, maybe they are mature enough I don’t know. I don’t really understand. I am a one-man team and don’t buy players. I am not happy not disappointed. It’s normal to lose and win but I am not happy that all the things that I thought them they can only do to some certain extent. The finishing was poor. How can we play two matches and not score a goal? It is poor. It is fatigue. It’s like that. Sometimes you get it well and sometimes you don’t get it well. All these girls are girls and are unpredictable. Anything can happen and it’s just like that.”
Bayelsa Queens technical adviser, Domo Okara: “Every coach would be happy when he wins. As you can see, our women’s league has improved. Every team in the Super Six are potential champions. Everybody is good. I am happy that we picked the most important point though this is not our best performance. We aimed to score like three or four goals which was our major plan but I know that it won’t be easy but it’s possible. I was surprised that they were comfortable with one goal which means we are in a tight situation that we must win Rivers Angels. We want to wrap up the game today so that a draw will see us qualify against Rivers Angels but we are in a tight situation now which means we must win against Rivers. I am not satisfied with the performance. The only answer against Rivers Angels is to win because if we don’t win we will also pack our bags and go home but I am very optimistic that we will do our best to win.”
Confluence Queens coach, Ogbonda Whyte: “As a coach of Confluence Queens, I am very happy because it hasn’t been easy for the team. For us to get to this road because I know that bookmakers didn’t give us but at the end of the day we were able to make it to the Super Six. With this result today, I am sure that we are going to qualify for the next round. It was a human error. Computers make mistakes like humans. I wouldn’t blame the referees. I wouldn’t blame the centre referee because she didn’t see the incident. I was only blaming the Assistant Referee and the Reserve Referee because they were the people expected to communicate the incident to the centre referee. What’s in my mind now is to go back home and work because I know with this result today, I am going to be at the next stage. We just need to go and work on the lapses discovered today. Definitely, I am already in the last four with this result. Linda Jiwaku is such a good goalkeeper bearing in mind that she was at the last FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup. She is a national team goalkeeper and we can see that in her performance today after yesterday’s lapses. I think it was top-notched.”
Edo Queens coach, Moses Aduku: “I am not disappointed with the outcome of today’s game. That’s football. Sometimes you win sometimes you lose. Today was a bad day in terms of scoring. That was all. It was just unfortunate. Today is just our bad day in the office in terms of scoring but in other departments of the team, we were in control of the game. It was unfortunate that got that cheeky goal.
“Everything is still possible and open. If you calculate the number of chances we had in this game, it is not 1-0 or 2-0 but I believe everything is still possible. It’s possible to win here 4-0 or 5-0. I would go back to ginger the girls and they will come out to give their best. I still believe we will play the final.”