NPFL Group A table-toppers, MFM FC of Lagos, were turned back empty-handed from Benin City with a 1-0 defeat to Bendel Insurance in their Matchday 12 encounter following a Kingsley Onovo goal at the UNIBEN Sports Complex on Saturday.
The Benin City side started the match better and had attempts from Onovo, Charles Omokaro and Michael Enaruna in the early moments by MFM goalkeeper Folarin Abayomi and on occasion by a clearance by Najeem Adeyinka.
MFM were pinned back in their half with the Benin Arsenal dominating play and their high pressing play paid on 16 minutes when Onovo latched onto Enaruna’s pass to score past Folarin who was proving difficult to beat.
It was all Insurance after Onovo’s goal as MFM rarely troubled their hosts. Insurance came close to scoring a second goal on 23 minutes but Adeyinka was at the right place to clear Odinaka Ezeh’s dangerous cross into the area.
MFM had their moments in the game and one of such was when Adeyinka’s long throw into the Insurance’s penalty area caused a goalmouth scramble before Benjamin Tanimu cleared to safety. The home side followed up that clearance with a counter-attack but were stopped from getting a second goal by Julius Emiloju who tracked back to protect MFM’s goal.
Insurance substitute Adimorama Eze’s perfect delivery into MFM area landed kindly for Enaruna whose effort failed to double the lead of Monday Odigie’s men in the 61st minute.
The rest of the game did not produce further goals despite MFM’s best attempt to claw something back.
The match petered out as Odigie’s Insurance earned themselves only their second win of the season in 11 matches while MFM remain in top spot of Group A despite the setback in Benin City.
The weekend fixtures in the NPFL continues on Sunday with nine matches.