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Dolphins lift Coca-Cola FA Cup

Posted by By PAUL EREWUBA on 2006/10/29 | Views: 1040 |

Dolphins lift Coca-Cola FA Cup


Dolphins of Port Harcourt, Sunday, at the MKO Abiola Stadium, Abeokuta, defiled the rain to win the 61st edition of the Coca Cola FA Cup final, beating Insurance of Benin 4–2 in penalty shootout, after the match ended 2–2 at full time.

Dolphins of Port Harcourt, Sunday, at the MKO Abiola Stadium, Abeokuta, defiled the rain to win the 61st edition of the Coca Cola FA Cup final, beating Insurance of Benin 4–2 in penalty shootout, after the match ended 2–2 at full time.

The match, which was kicked off by Insurance of Benin, started with Dolphins making the first incursion, which earned them a free kick on the edge of Insurance 18-yard box, but it went wide.

Insurance on their part, started a build up, which, was, however, punctuated by a not-too-solid Dolphins defence.
In the 13th minute, Dolphins looked good of scoring, after keeper Eze of Insurance missed calculation of punching away a ball that was goal-bound.

Insurance again came close to scoring in the 20th minute, and in the 22nd minute, Ahkiobare Jacob was fouled by Al Hassan Dosu of Dolphins, which earned him a yellow card.
A free-kick that resulted from that foul almost resulted in Insurance first goal, but for Chijioke Ejiogu’s wise save.

At this time, it became a ding-dong affair with Insurance having a little upper hand and the two goalkeepers were on break in the first half.
But Ajani Ibrahim’s left foot striker in the 39th minute, which gave Dolphins their first goal of the match, separated the Benin-based side from the Garden City Boys.

Indeed, it was a striker’s goal. Both teams worked hard to outwit one another, but Dolphins got confidence from their one goal lead, ending the first half in the alone goal Dolphins’ advantage.
Insurance resumed the second half more determined and purposeful.

Insurance pushed forward for an equalizer, but all their moves were thwarted by goalkeeper Ejiogu.
Insurance’s furay into Dolphins half, however, paid off in the 50th minute, with Edwin Eziodawe beating Ejiogu with a powerful left foot strike, which caught the keeper napping for Insurance equalizer.

In the 66th minute, inspirational striker, Victor Ezeji, walzing through two defenders, put the ball past Eze Ebenezer for Dolphins second goal.
Insurance, playing with determination, did not betray the confidence that they were still in contention. And in the 72nd minute, the Benin Arsenals got their equalizer for 2–2.
And with the score at 2–2 till the end of regulation, the two teams inside the heavy down pour went straight into penalties. And at the end of the penalties, Dolphins scored four, against Insurance two, thus, Dolphins emerged victorious with 6–4 goal aggregate.

Apart from winning three N3 million Coca Cola prize money, Dolphins will join Kwara United FC of Ilorin in next year’s CAF Confederation Cup.

Dolphins by this feat, have won the FA Cup for keeps having won it thrice in past editions.
Meanwhile, Victor Ezeji of Dolphins emerged the Most Valuable Player (MVP) and the highest goal scorer of the tournament.

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