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NPFL: Coach shocked, demoralized over penalty awarded Heartland

Kabiru Dogo, Head Coach of Nasarawa United FC says his team is shocked and demoralised over the 95th minute penalty awarded Heartland of Owerri in their match on Saturday.

Dogo who spoke to our reporters in Lafia on Monday after returning from Owerri where the match was played, described the referees decision as unfortunate.

Nasarawa United had held their host 1-1 till the 95th minute when a controversial penalty was awarded to Heartland which they converted to seal a 2-1 win over the away side.

“I pray the grace of God will allow us to do the right things that will move football in Nigeria forward. As I speak to you, we are not complaining but shocked and demoralised. What happened there is like magic to us.

“The referee awarded two penalties and the penalties were not penalties; so we lost the game 2-1.

“But despite the manner in which we lost, we decided to move forward. This is just a minor setback, we will continue to fight hard to achieve our goals,” the coach said.

He urged the League Management Company (LMC) to take tougher stance on poor officiating.

“I think the LMC has to take a critical look at all aspects of the game including officiating because I believe that if matches are well officiated, it goes a long way in improving the league as a whole,” he stressed.

Dogo agreed that the team must re-strategise, work harder and pick vital away points to drag itself back to the first 10 teams on the Nigeria Professional Football League table.

“My next focus is our home fixture against Katsina United, but I must confess, we need to go back to the drawing board and think of a better way of picking points from home.

“It is very important in this league; I believe with time, my team will get it right,” the gaffer added.


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