Abia Warriors head coach, Emmanuel Deutsch has hailed the tenacity and the commitment of his players after they defeated Heartland 4-2 in a Nigeria Professional Football League Matchday 19 fixture in Okigwe on Sunday.
The Naze Millionaires were the first to strike through Nnamdi Egbujor in the 11th minute. Ibrahim Olawoyin's equaliser came in the 24th minute.
Deutch’s men added three more goals in the second half to continue their supremacy over Heartland. Olawoyin (again), Jimoh Oni and Fatai Abdullahi were the scorers in the second half. Chigozie Igoh pulled one back in the 97th minute.
The Cameroon-born coach stated that that the victory was crucial in their determination to remain in the top-flight.
“It was a massive win for us and I must thank the players for the battling the way they fought from the start to the end of the game,” Deutsch told Goal.
“It was a game we knew we needed to win. I saw from the way the team played against FC Ifeanyi Ubah that we were capable of beating any team if we put our minds there. I am happy to be identified with these players but we still need to be careful.
“We need to approach the remaining games with the same intensity and determination with which we have played our last two matches. If we are able to do that, we are going to remain in the top flight at the end of the season.
“It is important that we must beat El Kanemi Warriors this midweek to show that our newfound form is not a fluke. They were beaten 2-0 at home by Delta Force in Maiduguri and they will come to Umuahia with optimism that they can regain the points they have lost at home.”
Abia Warriors are still in 10th position with 24 points from 19 games but they will move out of the relegation zone if they secure a home win against El Kanemi Warriors on Thursday.