Remo Stars players got the world talking on Friday morning as footages of their penalty kicks against Ijebu United made the rounds
In what appeared to be a deliberate action, players of Remo Stars were seen playing horrific penalty kicks in the Ogun State FA Cup final game between Remo Stars and Ijebu United.
Fans of the game who saw the footages cried blue murder and expressed their disappointment at the horror show.
While Remo Stars players failed to convert from the spot, albeit intentionally, their goalkeeper also failed to make an attempt to stop all of Ijebu United’s penalty kicks.
Ijebu United won the final on penalties 3-0 and both teams have qualified for the Federation’s Cup proper but more than that, the event of the day placed Nigeria’s name on the global map, for the wrong reasons.
If this isn’t Match Fixing, then I don’t know what it is.
Why is Nigerian football like this? Why don’t we ever want progress??
This is Ogun State FA Cup final between Remo Stars and Ijebu United 💔💔
— Ibukun Aluko (@IbkSports) July 14, 2022
Match fixing or protests
Investigations made by Soccernet confirmed that the players missed the penalties intentionally but sources close to the club and some of the fans present at the venue denied it was a fixed match.
A fan who was present at the venue of the game said; “It’s not a fixed match. The players were deliberately missing penalties after the referee failed to give enough additional time despite Ijebu United players time-wasting tactics. It was in protest because they had wanted to leave the pitch.”
The fan added that state FA Cup games don’t attract many spectators and that game couldn’t have been fixed for any reason as both teams have booked their passage to the Federation’s Cup proper.
Remo Stars’ apparent protests have however presented an embarrassing situation, to the club and Nigerian football as a whole as fans and stakeholders call for sanctions against the club.
Absolutely shamble from remo star fc at the ogun state fa cup final against ijebu United at otunba dipo stadium. This happens as the fa says there is no extra time after playing goalless draw at full time. Instead of forfeiting the match they decided to be playing the penalty out pic.twitter.com/okKV2GxzbT
— Swans future (@AbdulazeezAjum1) July 14, 2022
Social media reactions have sent same signals with many expressing their displeasure with the incident, especially considering Remo Star’s status as one of the leading lights of the modern football image in Nigeria.
The team, which is privately owned currently sit third on the log in the NPFL and are on the verge of sealing a qualification ticket for continental football.
While that achievement and what they have managed this season has attracted many positive appraisals, their latest action, regardless of its intent, has dipped the club in a scandal now of global attention and interest.