NPFL Matchday 12 Review: Enyimba Collapse In Jos, Heartland Condemn Rangers To Bottom Table As Nasarawa United Wins Again
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By George Akpayen
League leaders, Plateau United confirmed their hot form with a 4-0 thrashing of Cup holders, Enyimba International on Matchday 12 of the Nigeria Professional Football League ( NPFL) which also was the first full fixture of the New Year.
In all, a total of 28 goals were netted with Dakkada FC and Adamawa United accounting for five of the goals in their clash in Uyo, a tally matched by the game between Nasarawa United and FC IfeanyiUbah.
The MatchDay started on Saturday in Kano where visiting Akwa United made it four wins out of four for new manager Kennedy Boboye with a 1-0 win against Jigawa Golden Stars thanks to a goal by Orok Akarandut.
On Sunday the rest of the games were played and in Jos League champions Enyimba were blown away by a rampant Plateau United side 4-0. Uche Onwuasoanya gave the Jos side a 1-0 lead going into the half time leaving Enyimba with hopes of a way back in the second half.
However that wasn’t the case as former Enyimba striker Ibrahim Mustapha extended the lead for Plateau United before a brace from Abba Umar completed the rout at the Jos Township Stadium.
Nasarawa United against FC Ifeanyi Ubah FC saw four spots kicks awarded and it evenly shared by both teams but the host edged the five goal thriller 3-2 at the Lafia Stadium. Abubakar Lawal opened scoring for the home team from the spot following a handball incident in the box , a lead which lasted till the half time break.
Esosa Igbinoba made it 2-0 for the Solid Miners with a tap-in in the box few minutes before FC IfeanyiUbah were awarded a spot kick which was converted by Jimoh Gbadamosi to bring scores to 2-1.
Lawal scored his second goal of the game from the spot to once again restore the two goal lead of the home team but the lead didn’t last long when goalkeeper Danlami Umar fouled Samuel Kalu in the box leading to another penalty, this time to the visitors which Gbadamosi converted for his second of the game from the spot and reduced the deficit to 3-2. A score that stayed same till the final whistle.
Abia Warriors hung on for 75 minutes away to Kwara United in Ilorin before caving in to goals from Alamayo Abdulrazaq and Stephen Adah respectively to lose 0-2. In Gombe, a late goal from Atule Joseph five minutes from time helped Katsina United to a point against Wikki Tourist with the game ending 1-1. Manu Garba got Wikki’s only goal of the game.
Heartland FC of Owerri came from a goal down to pip Enugu Rangers 2-1. Traore Issif gave the visiting team the lead but it was cancelled by a strike from Abiodun Thompson before substitute Sadiq Abubakar sealed the win with a goal five minutes from full time.
Kano Pillars suffered a late disappointment in front of their fans against Warri Wolves when Charles Atsimene scored in the 90th minute to cancel out Auwalu Ali goal to end the game 1-1. Such wasn’t the case in Port Hacourt as Rivers United dispatched MFM FC with ease. Goals from Ossy Martin and Nelson Essor secured the win.
Two late goals from Ebube Duru and Abdulkarim Mumuni in the 81st and 92nd minute did the trick for Lobi Stars as it handed them a 2-0 win over hard fighting Sunshine Stars of Akure in Makurdi.
Dakkada FC fairytale run in the NPFL continued with a 4-1 thumping of Adamawa United thanks to a hattrick from Moses Effiong and a solitary strike by Femi Ajayi. Eka Unegbe scored the only goal for the Yola based side.