Wasteful Enyimba walk tight rope, draw goalless with Al Hilal in Aba
Enyimba’s dream of playing in the CAF Champions League group stage got a big dent yesterday when they were held to a goalless draw by Sudan’s Al Hilal in Aba.
Enyimba dominated the game from the beginning until the final whistle, but found it difficult to get a goal against a disciplined Al Hilal side, which were reduced to 10 men in the course of the game.Al Hilal’s defence played to their coach’s script, holding their place even in the face of unrelenting barrage by the desperate Enyimba forwards.
Al Hilal were reduced to 10 men when Bazar Hamid Nassir was sent off for stepping on Enyimba’s Daniel Darkwa towards the end of the first half.With the numerical advantage, Enyimba could not still find a way past Salim Macoola in goal for Al Hilal.
Speaking after the game, Enyimba Coach, Usman Abd’Allah said the game was still firmly balanced, adding that his side would now prepare for the winner-takes-all battle in Sudan.
According to Abd’Allah, Enyimba need only one goal without conceding any in the reverse leg in Omdurman on September 29 to win the tie.Yesterday’s result was Al Hilal’s first clean sheet in Nigeria since their 2-1 aggregate defeat of Leventis United in the quarterfinal of the 1987 CAF Champions Cup. They won the first leg 2-1 at home and held Leventis United to a goalless draw in the reverse fixture in Lagos.
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