Rivers United goalkeeper, Sunday Rotimi, insists Giwa FC’s second goal against Rivers United in Wednesday’s match day four Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) contest at the Rwang Pam Stadium, Jos should have been disallowed.
The goal scorer, David Sunday, appeared to have kicked the ball out of Rotimi’s hands and into the net in the 71st minute but referee, Henry Ogunyamodi insisted that the effort was legal and would stand much to the chagrin of the veteran goalkeeper.
“I was injured after the action because the ball was kicked out of my hands with great force. When I heard the referee’s whistle, I thought it was for a foul on the Giwa FC player but I was shocked that the referee awarded the goal.
“It is unfortunate but what can you do? We just have to move on,” he told the Rivers United Media.
Giwa FC trainer, Gbenga Ogunbote however shared a different view of the incident.
He accepted that Rotimi was in possession of the ball just before the goal was scored but added that the Rivers United goal keeper tried to “circumvent the rules of the game”.
“There is somebody (the referee) that controls the game. If he had said it was a goal, then it was a goal. If he had also said it wasn’t a goal, nobody would have questioned him.
“But I know too well that the rules say your two hands, as a goal keeper must be with the ball.
“I think Rotimi was trying to play pranks on the referee because he had just one hand on the ball. He was trying to circumvent the rules of the game. The referee was so close he was just about four, five metres away from the scene and must have seen the right thing.
“I want to respect the judgment of the referee,” he said.
Wednesday’s win lifted Giwa FC to 14th on the league standings with four points from four games while United dropped four places and are now in seventh place with six points from their opening four games.