It all started on Wednesday, 15th August, 2018 with a semi-final football match between YENAGOA ZONE and WARRI ZONE at the football field in Salem City, Warri, Delta State, Nigeria. The match officially got underway with officials of the GKS Youth Fellowship on hand to receive the match officials and players from both sides. Since it was a friendly competitive tie, the players were admonished “to play the ball not the leg”.
The centre referee, Israel Okudaye, an accredited match referee with the state council blew started the game at 10:30am and in the opening 15 minutes the YENAGOA Team got the ball into the net for the first goal of the match. As the game got on fiercely, the WARRI Team rallied from behind to force a draw through a spot kick. The first half ended with a goal apiece.
When the second half started both teams made positive endeavours to gain the upper hand, but it appeared as it were that both sides matched each other strength for strength as the game ended one all in regulation time.
The game stretched into extra time with the YENAGOA team getting a goal but it was ruled correctly for off side. The host team was cheered on by their numerous fans including youths resident in Salem City, but the visitors held on tenaciously as signs of fatigue took its toll on the players of both sides. When the game ended, the referee indicated that the teams would go into penalties to decide which of them would qualify into the finals. At the end of proceedings, the WARRI team emerged victorious with four goals to two in the penalty shoot-out. Thus, WARRI Team qualified to play in the finals of Sunday, 19th August, 2018 by the grace of God.