Heartland FC on Wednesday secured a 3-0 victory over former champions, Plateau United in Match Day 2 of the abridged Nigeria Professional Football League at the Okigwe Township Stadium, Imo.
The Nazi Millionaires are playing their home league matches at the new stadium and are in group B of the 2019 abridge league format of 12 teams in each group.
The 5-time Nigeria champions as early as the 7th minute who lost their first game of the season to Kano Pillars by a lone goal showed their intent to win the game as Chinonso Okonkwo almost broke the deadlock but his header hit the woodwork which was a big relief to the visitors.
Chinonso was again at the thick of action as he loomed around to open scoring towards the end of the first half, but he misfired his shot.
Matters became worse for away side as Gabriel Wassa carelessly got a second booking for a foul to reduce the team to 10 men who were put on the back foot for long in the first half.
Plateau United who had the record of being unbeaten in their last four NPFL matches against the host were made to pay for their lethargic play.
Efe Yarhere headed home a well delivered Chidiebere Ajoku cross to score Heartland’s first goal of the 2018/2019 NPFL season in the 60th minute.
In the 79th minute, Chinonso who had been a thorn in the flesh of the away side defence finally marked his home debut with a well-taken goal to make the scoreline 2-0 following a poor communication between goalkeeper David Obiozor and Ogene Elijah.
In the 87th minute, Heartland secured the three points when again Chinonso converted from the spot after he was upended in the box.
With this victory, the Owerri landlords are second on the Group B log table a point behind leaders, Ifeanyi Ubah who are on 4 points while Plateau United have gone down to 7 position with a single point having drawn their first game.
MATCH DAY 2 RESULTS
MFM FC 2-0 Kwara United
Niger Tornadoes 1-1 Rivers United
Abia Warriors 1-2 Go Round
Ifeanyi Ubah 1-0 Nasarawa United