BENIN CITY, October 13, 2017 – Nasarawa Amazons have been crowned champions of the 2016/17 Nigeria Women Premier League after defeating Delta Queens 1-0, in the Super Four final decided at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City, Edo State.
Amarachi Okoronkwo scored the only goal in a match which saw the Deputy Governor of Edo State, Rt. Hon. Phillip Shuaibu take the ceremonial kick.
Deputy Governor of Nasarawa State, Hon. Silas Agara, a former board member of the Nigeria Football Federation arrived the stadium half an hour into the match.
Among the dignitaries present at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium to witness the final were Super Falcons striker, Asisat Oshoala and defender Onome Ebi. Not forgetting, Former Super Falcons midfielder and centurion, Maureen Madu.
Just yesterday in the round Robin stage of the championship, Nasarawa Amazons and Delta Queens played out an entertaining 2-2 draw to finish first and second respectively.
Both teams spent the early stages of the final today sizing each other up.
In that period, Delta Queens’ captain, Joy Jegede, barely threatened with her free kicks, while Nasarawa Amazons failed to find the much needed touch in the final third with Chinyere Igbomalu at the heart of their attack.
The cagey affair continued as the game progressed but Nasarawa Amazons looked more likely to score and did not stop troubling Rita Akarekor who stood in goal for Delta Queens.
The first goal of the match finally came in the 41st minute when an unmarked Chinyere Igbomalu sent in a cross from the right which Amarachi Okoronkwo headed beyond Akarekor who was slow in reacting.
Nasarawa Amazons returned for the second half as the team on the ascendancy and could have extended their lead just two minutes in when Igbomalu was put through on goal but missed the post by the whiskers.
As the pendulum swung Delta’s way, it took Joy Duru’s timely clearance to deny a perfect Maryann Ezenagu equalizer.
The ensuing corner kick resulted in Nasarawa Amazons goalkeeper Chioma Nwankwo getting injured and eventually substituted in the 63rd minute. And for the first time in the tournament, Amazons used a different goalkeeper in Uchenna Chukwu.
Soon after play resumed, pacy Ezenagu found herself sandwiched by two Nasarawa Amazons defenders inside the box but her final touch was easily gathered by Chukwu.
Meanwhile Joy Jegede grew frustrated at her inability to convert from free kicks as Delta Queens mounted pressure in the latter stages of the match. Adebisi Saheed also saw her free kick punched out as the clock wound down agonizingly.
— Janine Anthony (@ChiquaDiva) October 13, 2017
Nasarawa held on to clinch their second premier league title after their 2013 exploits. They take home a N3.5 million pay packet; N3 million prize money with additional N500,000 bonus (approx. $10000 in total)
— 411 Sports Lady ® 🏆 (@RachyUgiagbe411) October 13, 2017
Delta Queens, the runner up cart away N2 million (approx. $5,700) and the third place team Bayelsa Queens, were give N1 million with an additional N500,ooo (approx. $4300).
Full Tournament Clip coming soon
Nasarawa Amazons! 2016/17 NWPL champions! pic.twitter.com/9oKa35ee8Z
— Chibuogwu N. (@Chibuogwu_N) October 13, 2017