By Legheri Onyamom
Nembe City General Manager, Meremu Okara has blamed their 0-1 loss away to Sharks in the Glo Premier League on the departure of nine key players during the mid-season transfer window.
Okara told supersport.com that they are doing their best to manage their squad following the decision of the players to seek pastures new.
He praised his players for putting up a good fight against Sharks despite losing the game.
"We lost nine of our key players recently, so I think we had a fair game given the circumstances," he said.
"It is not as if we wanted to sell them, but they insisted on leaving.
"It was the first time we were playing without a host of our regulars, so the players did their best even though we lost."
He added: "One of the central defenders was playing in the top flight for the first time in this match; therefore you can see we are only trying to manage the situation we find ourselves."
Sharks dominated the match from the start, and should have gone ahead on five minutes when a penalty was awarded after Johnny Austin was adjudged to have handled the ball in the box.
However, Chibuzor Osigwe's effort was well saved by Japhet Opubo.
Nembe City defended in numbers, attacking mostly on the counter, with Ebitimi Agogo playing as the lone striker.
Sharks broke the deadlock in the 36th minute when Tayo Fabiyi tapped into an empty net following a defensive mix-up involving Jonathan Zikiye, Austin and Opubo.
Opubo kept his side in the match with two brilliant saves off Osigwe and Fabiyi in the 48th and 53rd minutes respectively. Sharks were never in trouble and won comfortably in the end.
Sharks still remain bottom of the league log, as the other clubs in the bottom four - Wikki Tourists, Akwa United and ABS – all won their matches on Wednesday.