Lobi Stars ended their CAF Champions League campaign on a high after they defeated ASEC Mimosas 2-0 at the Nnamdi Azikiw Stadium on Saturday evening.
The result sees the Nigerians lift themselves off the foot of the Group A table and leapfrog into third place, leaving the Ivorians (who started the day with genuine hope of advancing) as the wooden spoon winners. Group rivals Mamelodi Sundowns and Wydad Casablanca advanced into the knockout rounds.
Stars got off to a flying start and claimed the lead as early as the third minute, with Alimi Sikiru getting the better of goal ASEC goalkeeper Abdoul Cisse to put an immediate spanner in the works for the visitors.
The Ivorian club settled back into the match and began to find their rhythm, but they were unable to really stretch Stars’ defence and test goalkeeper Olufemi Kayode. ASEC dominated possession and pinned the hosts back in their own half.
However, on 39 minutes the Nigerian hosts put themselves two goals to the good, as Sikiru took advantage of some sloppy defending and completed his brace. Stars were fully in control with a 2-0 lead at half time.
The second half saw Stars sit back and look to play in a conservative manner, knowing that ASEC had to do all the running. There were a few chances at either end, but ultimately no further goals were scored to leave the Nigerians as 2-0 victors.
Lobi Stars (2) 2 (Sikiru 3’ 39’)
ASEC Mimosas (0) 0
Stars: Kayode, Bashiru, Kwambe, Aghahowa, Atamenwan, Martins, Oahimijie, Ojo, Mbah (Kone 75’), Sikiru (Olisema 90+3’), Timileyin (Stephen 73’)
ASEC: Cisse, Ouattara, Sako (Gonazo 23’), Coulibaly, Angbandji, Diarrassouba (Keumian 51’), Badie, Bance, Sanogo, Toure, Bagate (Tapsoba 57’)