Bendel Insurance pipped 10-man Rangers 1-0 to emerge champions of the 2023 Federation Cup at the Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba on Wednesday.
Imade Osehenkhoe scored the winning goal from the spot late in the first half.
Rangers International hard labour to qualify and play in the final ended in disappointment as fans and players hopes to see the team turn around the not-too-good performance in the League season by winning the title turn sour.
It was the Benin Arsenal’s fourth Federation Cup title and their first in 43 years.
Insurance carved out the first real opportunity of the game in the 16th minute, but Deputy Echeta’s deflected shot went off target.
Eight minutes later, Rangers replied with a chance of their own, but Amas Obasogie did well to save for a corner.
Both teams continued their search for the opening goal, with Rangers forward, Godwin Obaje going into the referee’s book for a rash tackle on Julius Emiloju six minutes before the break.
Bendel Insurance were awarded a penalty late in the first half when Chinerwm Ugbwueze handled the ball inside the box.
Ugbwueze was also sent off for the deliberate act. He was earlier booked for a poor challenge on an opponent.
Osarenkhoe calmly converted home, sending Rangers goalkeeper, Detan Ogundare the wrong way.
Despite playing with 10 men, Rangers made the first attempt at goal after the break.
Unsatisfied with his side’s advantage, Insurance head coach, Monday Odigie made double substitutions in the 51st minute.
Vincent Augustus and Ebenezer Odeyemi took the place of Zaidu Ayuba and Ismael Sarki.
Both created chances in the second period but were let down by their poor marksmanship.
Bendel Insurance will compete in the CAF Confederation Cup next season if they win the competition.