Newly promoted NPL side Sporting Lagos are the kings of the Naija Super 8, after beating Remo Stars 4-2 via penalties after the final ended 1-1 in regulation time.
The sporting moments are back in the city of excellence. Yes, good football is back in Lagos State and this time it is for real and surely has all the trappings of what Nigerians are used to seeing in European leagues.
Sporting Lagos found the breakthrough in the 53rd minute as Aliu Salaudeen shoved in the ball into the back of the net of Remo Stars, tapping in a cross whipped in by Emeka. The ball went beyond the reach of goalkeeper Kayode Bankole.
It was the first goal by Salaudeen in the Naija Super 8 and the former Lobi Stars and Golden Eaglets star did not disappoint.
The goal sparked a spirited fightback by Remo Stars, who threw in everything to find an equaliser. The match was almost blighted by an outrageous decision by the match officials to disallow a legitimate goal by Adams Olamilekan of Remo Stars on 86 minutes, which would have tied the scores at 1-1.
Remo Stars were incensed by the decision to cancel the goal of Olamilekan, a substitute thrown into the attack by coach Daniel Ogunmodede in a last ditch attempt to force an equaliser.
But Olamilekan and Remo Stars would not be denied of a deserved equaliser as he netted the equaliser deep into eight minutes of stoppage time. The goal was the last in regulation time as the match officials blew for penalty kicks to determine the champions.
Having defeated Remo Stars in a group match, Sporting Lagos had the mental edge as they went on to score four penalties while Remo Stars missed two of their spot kicks to emerge champions of the Naija Super 8.
In the penalties, newly signed striker Junior Lokosa was the first to score for Sporting Lagos and the trend was followed by Isaac Anold, Nwokeji, and Saturday Okon all of Sporting Lagos.
Remo Stars captain Junior Nduka and defender Sadik had their penalty kicks saved by goalkeeper Nwoke Christian to end an exhilarating final contest