Cup competition across the world has always been full of surprises, name it from Nigeria’s Challenge Cup, now Federation Cup to English FA Cup to Copa de Ray in Spain or French Cup, clubs from the lower leagues have always come to knock out the bookmakers favourites.
How else can one describe what happened at the Winners Golden Bet/Lagos FA Cup this year, which finals hold Monday at Agege Stadium from 1:30 p.m., when youthful side, Nath Boys FC took on another youth team, Christ Ambassadors FC.
The two finalists on Friday at Agege Stadium, tore the form book, and left bookmakers and analysts wondering.
Christ Ambassadors came from behind to force a draw in their first semi-final clash against Taiwo Oloyede tutored side, Eko Akete Football Club. In the ensuring penalty shoot out, Eko Akete who have won their last two matches in the championship through penalty shootout fell to Christ Ambassadors, thanks to the heroics of their goalkeeper, Esin Emmanuel, who stopped three spot kicks.
Nath Boys who are one of the youngest team in the championship with an average age of 17 years also stopped their much older and experienced National League side, First Bank. The Nath Boys came from behind to draw the encounter 1-1 draw and later picked the final ticket through penalties.
Speaking on the drama of the semi-final matches, Deji Beecroft, Assistant General Manager of Winners Golden Bet, expressed satisfaction with the organization of the Lagos FA Cup since the kick off last month.
“From what I have seen so far in this tournament, I think the Seyi Akinwunmi-led board of the Lagos FA deserves commendation for their above board performance, hence we are happy as a company for being part of this success story so far,” he said.
He also noted that the officiating has been fair and, firm, hence the reason two grassroots clubs are in the finals and would be representing
Lagos State at the Federation Cup.
Dotun Coker, Technical committee chairman of the Lagos FA, said the standard of the competition this year has been very high, praising all the clubs that participated in the competition. He said that with the standard displayed by most of the clubs, it shows that the standard of football in Lagos is on the rise, adding that if the defending champions, AS Racine FC could crashed out in round of 32 and former champions and last year’s runners up, First Bank FC
could not make the final, it means that high level of scouting and development in the area of talents discovery is noted.
However, the women’s final between defending champions, FC Robo and last year’s finalist, COD United Ladies will precede the men’s final at