08 March 2018 04:19
It took the brilliance of Monsuru Bashiru with a stunning late goal to hand over a 2-1 victory for Mountain of Fire & Miracles (MFM) FC against Mouloudia Club d'Alger (MC Alger) in their 1/16th Total CAF Champions League first leg match at the Agege Stadium in Lagos on Wednesday.
Midfielder Akuneto Chijioke gave the hosts the lead from the spot kick in the 36th minute but Amachi Aziovez levelled up for the visitors in the 56th minute ; before Monsuru Bashiru scored the winner with barely six minutes left in the game.
In a well-disputed match, MFM actually created the first real chance but Bashiru’s volley missed target in the fifth minute. Two minutes later, Onuwa Chukwuka finds Chijioke with a lovely pass but the forward failed to find the net.
Few minutes later, the visitors responded with their first incursion at the other end but Amada Ibrahim saw his effort saved by goalkeeper Ospino Egbe in goal for MFM.
In the 24th minute, MFM was forced to change injured Stanley Okoro was injured who was promptly replaced by Ubakanma Peter as the home side pressed for the opener.
The breakthrough finally came for MFM some 10 minutes before the end of the first stanza when Akuneto who also scored MFM’s winner against Real Bamako FC in their last home tie, converted from the spot after he was tripped inside the box. And MFM could have doubled the lead in the 49th minute but Akuneto fails to find the net after a through pass from Lawal Abayomi.
Meanwhile, MC Alger equaliser came in the 55th minute when Amachi fired past the on -rushing Egbe goalkeeper after he breached the defence of the home side.
But the best moment of the game was delivered by Bashiru when he saw his scorcher from outside the box sailed into the net as MFM secured a slim 2-1 head of the reverse fixture in Algiers.
Coach Fidelis Ilechukwu (MFM MC)
We have a lot of work to do in Algeria and the only thing we can do is to go out for a win; we would take that risk. I know it would be difficult but anything is possible in football. We have all it takes to win and qualify (for the mini-league) and that is my belief. We had the weather advantage here but we did not use it, we will prepare for the weather too in Algeria.
Coach Bernard Casoni (MC Alger)
The weather really affected my playedid not play to their optimum capacity. Wepositioned through the game but the (winning) goal came very late. All the same we played well and MFM defended well too. It is a good result for us because we know what we are capable of doing at home.