.. Extols Iheanacho’s Penalty Composure, Professionalism
Imo State Sports Commission Chairman, Hon Prince Sir Eleazar Onyewuchi Ogbonna “Ambassador” on behalf of His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Imo state, Distinguished Senator Hope Odidika Uzodinma “Onwa Oyoko” has congratulated the Super Eagles contingent at the ongoing 2023 Africa Cup Of Nations AFCON, in Cote D’Ivoire on their passage to the final Saturday.
The 3-time AFCON Champions, Nigeria on Wednesday at Bouake, Cote D’Ivoire defeated Bafana Bafana of South Africa 4-2 on penalties after the scintillating semi final encounter ended 1-1 after regulation time and extra time.
Williams Troost Ekong had given the West African giants the lead in the second half from the penalty spot after reining African footballer of Year, Victor Osihmen was brought down in the box before the South Africans pegged back 5 minute to end of the game through Mokouena’s penalty after what would have been Osihmen’s second goal of the tournament and Nigeria’s second of the night was rulled out as the VRA brought play back for Yusu Ayila’s foul inside the box prior to the goal.
Nwabali Stanley in goal for Nigeria totally dimistified South African captain and goalkeeper, Williams who his team relied upon following his historic performance in their quarter final game making four penalty saves. Nwabali instead became the hero with double penalty saves that was followed by Kelechi Iheancho’s last kick to send Nigeria into the final.
Prince Ogbonna who in a chart with Imo Sports Commission Media praised the resilient and patriotic performance of the Nigerians at the AFCON commended Ohaji/Ogbema in Imo state born Kelechi Iheancho for his calmness and professional attitude haven missed all the games untill the semi final against South Africa were he kept his cool to convert the last penalty that sent Nigeria to the final.
“We are proud of the Eagles and particularly happy that our Son, Iheancho was instrumental in the closing period of a very tight and tough match for Nigeria.
“His performance and that of other Imo born athletes who have continued to make the state and the nation is the reason His Excellency, Governor Uzodimma is diversifying his Shared Prosperity mantra to empower our talented youths and the Sports Commission will continue to carry the massage an the programmes to it’s positive use.
“We however, urge the Super Eagles contingent not rest on oars but to stay focused and more dedicated till the trophy is lifted.