Bendel Insurance Hold Nasarawa United To A Goalless Draw

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Nigeria Professional Football League side, Nasarawa United FC, created a slew of chances but failed to get many of them on target as they were held to a 0-0 draw by an impressive second division side, Bendel Insurance of Benin City, in a preseason friendly match played at the Lafia City Stadium on Saturday evening.

On a beautiful evening weather condition, United’s Alaekwe Chijioke got the game off to a promising start with a raid down the right and a thunderous shot that went just a few inches off the target in the first fifteen minutes, but it was one of few chances for the home side in an energy-sapping encounter.

Bendel’s menacing attacker, Adodo, had his golden chance to give the visitors the lead three minutes before the half-time whistle headed out for a corner by substitute defender, Ugochukwu Gabriel, after it was parried by United’s keeper, Ameh Godwin.

The visitors dominated a larger part of the second-half but it was the Solid Miners who went closest to scoring as left full-back, Paul Odeh, struck the woodwork with his spectacular freekick from a tight angle.

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United would dominate possession toward the latter stages of the game with former Nigeria junior international, King Osanga and Paul Odeh, putting in superb performances up and down the left flank, taking part in providing defence-splitting passes and getting back to snuff out any counters.

Despite turning the screw as they created a flurry of late chances, Nasarawa United couldn’t break the deadlock as Bendel Insurance rearguard held firm to share the spoils.

It was the duo’s first meeting since they last met at the Aiteo Federation Cup Round of 32 in Enugu, four months ago, where the Lafia-based side thrashed the Benin-based side 3-1.

Nasarawa United will be involved in a few friendlies in the coming days before the 2021/22 Nigeria Professional Football League Season gets underway on 17th December, with the 2021 Aiteo Federation Cup runners-up playing their first game of the new season away to Heartland FC in Owerri, Imo State.

POST-MATCH REACTIONS

Arikya Abubakar(Head Coach, NAS): “This is the kind of match we need because they give you a fight for your money.

“They are very physical and very difficult to play, unlike in the elite league where you have a lot of spaces to manoeuvre.

“We are still building our team, and doing everything possible to stamp our authority once the new league season kicks-off.

“We are calling on our teaming supporters to continue to lend their voices to our success.”

Greg Ikhenoba(Coach, BEN)

“It’s a good game. Very obvious that we played against a mature team, with the boys trying to bring out what they know how to do best.

“We are still building because we have some new players in our team( Bendel Insurance).

“I won’t lie to you, Nasarawa United are a good side. They have good players and very confident on the ball.

“I think all they need to do now is to improve more on their finishing.”