Enugu Rangers coach, Imama Amapakabo, has questioned the competence of Henry Ogunmalaye, the referee in his team’s 1-0 loss to Lobi Stars.
Lobi Stars of Makurdi qualified for the final of the 2015 men’s Federation Cup after defeating Enugu Rangers 1-0 in Katsina on Wednesday.
The high points of the game happened in the first half were Lobi took the lead in the 37th minute and Rangers had two players sent off.
And those decisions by the referee have elicited a bitter reaction from Amapakabo, the Rangers technical adviser.
“Do we really have referees of Henry Ogunmalaye and his cohort (Assistant refs) all from Ondo state in our football carrying a FIFA badge or it’s just that they chose today to do their master(s) biding,” he wrote on his Facebook page.
“As I sit here playing back events of one evening seeing the tears roll down faces of my players after the first half in the dressing room asking me questions I sincerely wish I had answers for: “coach na so dem dey play football?” “Coach wetin we do dis ref na?” “Coach how we wan take play dis kine ball?
“My heart bleeds to them knowing fully well that these questions I can never find answers to, that no amount of training will prepare you for such inhuman actions taken by an individual that has thrown decorum to the dogs. I stand in gallant royal salute to my players standing tall playing against a shameful 15 men (11 Lobi players + 4 match officials) even when they were down to 9 players still a better team.
“I make bold to say here and will for ever do and say so, Rangers nine-man team today will beat the Lobi 11 men any place anywhere if the officiating is free and fair.
“I write not as Rangers coach but as one who has given his life for the growth and development of football to this great country Nigeria.”
Lobi Stars will face Akwa United in the final. The Uyo-based team defeated Nasarawa United 1-0 in the second semi-final.