Purple Crown FC of Enugu on Sunday defeated city rivals Lamray United FC 5-2 after penalty kicks to win the first Nationwide League One (NLO) South-East Pre-Season Tournament.
In the tournament’s final match, which was played at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in Enugu, the game ended in a 1-1 draw 90 minutes of play.
Purple Crown went on to score four penalty kicks, while Lamray United scored only one.
Speaking after the match, the Chairman of Purple Crown FC, Adewale Alao, thanked God for giving his team the match after playing against their city rivals in a tension-soaked final game.
Alao said his team displayed tactical and technical discipline on the field of play to hold down their opponents.
“I thanked the NLO officials in the South-East zone for organising this vital warm-up tournament. Enugu is more or less the Spain of Nigeria, where quality players and football can be found anytime,’’ he said.
The club chairman assured football fans in Enugu that his team would make the state proud in the NLO competition proper by improving their game.
The South-East Director of NLO, Ebere Amaraizu, lauded the secretariat of the NLO for approving the pre-season tournament.
He also thanked the clubs which participate in the four-day tournament, as well as other officials who in one way or the other contributed to the competition’s success.
“It is clear that the zone parades a high number of tactically and technically-sound clubs and this pre-season tournament gave each team a level-playing field to display its worth.
“The pre-season event has now come to stay in the zone, and we will be having it each season henceforth,’’ Amaraizu said.
Speaking also, a member of the NLO Board, Baba Ali, said he was impressed with the level of talent on display and the commitment the clubs put into the tournament.
“It is on record that the zone is the first to organise a well-packaged and successive pre-season NLO event,’’ he said.
Eight South-Eastern state clubs, playing in the NLO and drawn from Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Imo and Enugu state, participated in the tournament.
The NLO board had scheduled March 29 for the commencement of the NLO league nationwide. (NAN)