The Creative Championship


Real Sapphire 3 - 2 Escola United

12th December, 2023

Real Sapphire steal show, maximum points with late comeback

Real Sapphire scored the odd goal just a few seconds from full time to defeat Escola.

It started with end-to-end action as both sides pushed to score the opener. It was the hosts who found the breakthrough in the 10th minute through Olawale Ayodele. The winger raced onto a perfectly weighted pass from Ibrahim Yusuf to tuck the ball home from close range.

The goal helped the hosts to assert their dominance on the game. As for Escola, they spent the half finding their feet, as the chances they created were few and far in between.

Coach Opeyemi rang the changes in the second half as his team grew in confidence. With fresh legs in the set-up, it didn’t take long for the visitors to pull level, as Olanrewaju powered home a header from close range after a corner-kick.

It was a goal that unsettled Real Sapphire as they looked shaky after the restart. Smelling blood, Escola pushed for the winner and thought they’d gotten it in the 87th minute, through Femi Afuwafe’s free-kick.

There was however more drama to come after the second-half sub’s goal. Escola buckled under pressure and conceded a penalty in the 90th minute when Lateef Abdulazeez was felled in the box. Ibrahim Adamu stepped up, took the penalty, but saw it saved. He however was on hand to tuck home the rebound and draw Real Sapphire level.

Not satisfied with a point, the hosts went for the kill, just after thwarting an Escola counter-attack. With a quick counter-attacking move of their own, Lateef found himself at the receiving end of a rebound, with an open goal in front of him.

His late goal not only put him on the score-sheet, but snatched victory from the jaws of defeat for Real Sapphire. The clash of the newcomers ended in a thriller, with Escola, on the losing end, having more questions than answers.


Lateef Abdulazeez (Real Sapphire)

The defensive midfielder powered Real Sapphire’s late drive to get a win at the death.