Jonathan Zikiye stormed to a fruitful debut for Dolphins FC in their Match Day 10 fixture at the Liberation Stadium netting the former champions second goal in the 3-0 mauling of the Warriors from Umuahia.
The former Nembe City left-back afterwards paid tribute to the team’s management and technical bench for finding him worthy to wear their shirts.
Dolphins were a goal up and had barely survived a rare offensive by Abia Warriors in added time of the first half. Isiaka Olawale had picked up the ball on a counter offensive to release Emem Eduok down the left and the junior international squared into the box leaving Zikiye with the most simple of finishes.
Zikiye in a chat with lmc-ng.org expressed gratitude to God and the team's coaching crew for the chance given to him. "I feel great for what God has done for me today. I have to thank the coaches and management of Dolphins for their patience and having the confidence in me." Zikiye said.
It was Dolphins first consecutive home victories of the season and Glo Premier League Champions in 2011 were never in real danger of failing to rack home the maximum points against their lethargic visitors who could not muster an attempt on target for over 50 minutes of play.
After a tentative start to the game, Dolphins took the game to their opponents and danger started looming for the visitors as early as in the 7th minute when Victor Alegbe broke down the right flank but his cut-back eluded everyone in the box. Three minutes later, Eduok took two Warriors in his stride and his left-footed effort from the edge of the box came off the foot of goalkeeper Joseph Onuoha's post.
And after Kingsley Salami had a rare effort on goal for the visitors on the 15th minute, the hosts responded, first Emeka Atuloma's glancing header was saved by Onuoha but in the 21st minute, he could not prevent Stanley Eguma's side from taking the lead. A corner was played short by Alegbe to Atuloma, the lanky midfielder then sent an in-swinging cross which Onuoha misjudged, allowing Ebube Opokwu to head into an unguarded net.
Although Ladan Bosso's Warriors showed more intent in the second half, the gulf in class between both teams was evident for all to see and Eduok wrapped up the scoring with a well deserved goal in the 89th minute after a brilliant solo run.Bosso who commended the match officials said his team will draw from the lessons of their recent three consecutive defeats.
"First I have to commend the confidence of the match officials, for a very clean officiating. But my boys played off-tactics and conceded goals that could be avoided. We will go back to the drawing board and see if we can fine-tune things."
Sunday Rotimi, Chizoba Amaefule, Jonathan Zikiye, Ayobami Asekunowo, Victor Ezuruike, Emeka Atuloma, Isiaka Olawale, Victor Alegbe (Tasiu Lawal 65'), Bolaji Sakin (Naseem Abutreika 74'), Emem Eduok, Ebube Opokwu (Ifeanyi Egwim 85').
Austine Brown, Kennedy Chinwo, Douhadji Joseph, Fred Okwara
Booked: Isiaka Olawale, Jonathan Zikiye
Goals: Ebube Opokwu, Jonathan Zikiye, Emem Eduok.
Joseph Onuoha, Obasi Okoro, Stanley Onyekachi, Kingsley Salami, Austin Obarakpo, Sampson Chuks, Ifeanyi Onyeali, Edward Bewarang (Ugochukwu Obiegbu), Cletus Itodo, Chisom Chikatara (Peter Onyekachi 50'), Bishop Onyeudo.
Chinedu Anozie, Ogbonnaya Okemiri, Uche Oguchi, Wasiu Showemimo, Okoro Marshal.
Booked: Samson Chuks
Dolphins - Abia Warriors
Shots (On target) 18 (10) - 5 (2)
Corners: 10 - 2