- Matilda Otuene-Onyiloha thanks Rivers State governor Nyesom Wike for support
Rivers Angels on Sunday afternoon retained their Nigeria Women Football League (NWFL) Premiership crown after another dazzling 4-0 win over Sunshine Queens of Akure.
Playing inside the main bowl of the Dipo Dina Stadium, the Jewel of Rivers produced a scintillating performance to leave no one in doubt as to their deserving nature of the crown.
Edwin Okon’s ladies needed a win of any margin to render the other game going on simultaneously (between Delta Queens and FC Robo) academical and they truly made hay while the sun shone.
Oghebrume Ikehkua gave the New Vision Girls a dream start when she planted home a brilliant header after a superb cross from the equally impressive Vivian Ikechukwu with just two minutes into the game.
Sunshine Queens then mounted a spirited effort to come back into the game but were denied on a couple of occasions by Angels’ goalkeeper and captain Ibubeleye Whyte.
With just seconds left in the first half, Ikechukwu got an insurance goal for Angels when she lashed home a rebound after some good work by Paulinus Ifeoma on the right.
Angels made it three in the 66th after lovely solo effort by Alice Ogebe before Maryann Ezenagu’s diving header to Paulinus’ 81st minute free kick wrapped up the win in style for Angels.
The win ensured that Rivers Angels retain their league title after winning 4-0 in three consecutive games at the Super Four. The team will now represent Nigeria at the WAFU Zone B qualifying tournament for the CAF Women’s Champions League.
At the end of the NWFL Super Six tournament, Rivers Angels’ forward Oghenebrume Ikekhua won the golden boot with five goals from as many matches while goalkeeper Whyte was named Goalkeeper of the tournament after keeping four clean sheets in five matches.
Team’s General Manager Matilda Otuene-Onyiloha thanked the state government for their immense support and promised to make the good people of Rivers State proud.
“I want to start by commending our chief sponsor, Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike for his support,” Otuene said.
“I equally want to appreciate our Honorable Commissioner of Sports, Boma Iyaye for his encouragement all through the competition.
“We started this Super 6 with two draws which made people question our quality but my girls understood what was at stake and turned things around from the third game.
“They went all out and showed the true spirit of Champions, they actually gave it all,” she added.
Topscorer Ikekhua who joined Rivers Angels from Delta Queens at the start of the season is excited for emerging highest goalscorer and winning first Premiership title.
“I feel very happy because I’ve never won any Premiership before so coming here to win one and also qualify for Continental competition is a big plus,” said a happy Ikekhua.
“Before the tournament started, I told myself that I will emerge highest goalscorer so I am super excited.
“I want to commend my teammates for their fighting spirit especially when we drew our first 2 matches.
“The never give up spirit from them was encouraging and we worked together to ensure we redeemed ourselves,” she said.