Akwa United beat Niger Tornadoes 3-2 on penalty kicks to claim AITEO Cup

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Akwa United Football Club of Uyo on Sunday in Lagos defeated Niger Tornadoes FC 3-2 on penalty kicks to win the maiden edition of the AITEO Cup competition.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Akwa United won the former Federation Cup competition after the pulsating encounter at the Agege Stadium ended goalless at full time.

The Uyo side had won the Federation Cup in 2015 and reclaimed Nigeria’s oldest and biggest domestic competition after the ensuing penalty shootout went into sudden death.

Scoreline after five penalty kicks each side was 2-2, with each side missing three kicks each.

But, after Niger Tornadoes missed their opening kick in the sudden death phase, Gabriel Okechukwu put an end to it all by being perfect with a left foot shot down the middle.

The competition’s final match and colourful closing ceremony final was graced by eminent personalities, including Governors Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State, Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom and Abubakar Bello of Niger.

Also present at the match were CAF President Ahmad, CAF Vice Presidents Kwesi Nyantakyi and Omari Selemani, CAF Emergency Committee members Souleman Waberi and Amaju Pinnick.

NAN reports that victory in the match handed Akwa United the ticket to represent Nigeria in the 2018 CAF Confederation Cup competition.

Akwa United also swept the individual honours as goalkeeper Ojo Olorunleke won both the Best Goalkeeper and Most Valuable Player awards, while coach Abdul Maikaba was adjudged the Best Coach.

Akwa United forward Christian Pyagbara also claimed the Top Scorer award with his seven goals in this year’s competition. (NAN)

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