Mfon Udoh’s eighth league goal helped Akwa United see off Heartland FC in Okigwe as MFM FC and FC Ifeanyi Ubah maintained their spots at the summit of Group A and Group B respectively at the halfway stage of the abridged 2018/2019 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) season following the resumption of league action with Match Day 11 fixtures on Sunday.
MFM increased their lead at the top of Group A to six points with victory over visiting Bendel Insurance at the Agege Township Stadium in Lagos. Olawale Abisoye headed the Olukoya Boys into the lead from Jonathan Zikiye’s corner in the 30th minute. The hosts doubled their lead in the second half with Micheal Ohanu turning in yet another Zikiye set-piece assist.
Still in Group A, Wikki Tourists ran out 2-0 winners over Rivers United courtesy of strikes from Abba Umar and Issa Gata at the Pantami Stadium in Gombe. Over at the Mohammed Dikko Stadium in Katsina, home team Katsina United missed a penalty and had a player sent off but were able to hold on to Martins Usule’s 13th minute strike for a 1-0 win over Kwara United.
Enyimba stay second in Group A after battling to a goalless draw away at Sunshine Stars at the Ondo State Sports Complex in Akure while the Group’s other fixtures involving Remo Stars versus Rangers and Niger Tornadoes versus Lobi Stars were postponed as a result of the Rangers and Lobi’s continental engagement.
Kano Pillars search for a first away win since the start of last season continues after they were pipped 1-0 at FC Ifeanyiubah who maintain their grip at the top of Group B. Uche Ihuarulam making his debut for the Nnewi side made up for a missing a glorious chance in the 10th minute by scoring the winner in the 66th minute. FC Ifeanyiubah have now won five of six home matches keeping clean sheets in all five victories.
An inspired Mfon Udoh led Akwa United to a 2-1 victory over Heartland FC who succumbed to a first loss at the Okigwe Township Stadium this season. Udoh set up Ndifreke Effiong – recently called up to the Super Eagles squad – to give the visitors the lead in the 4th minute with his fifth goal of the campaign. The home side leveled through Chidiebere Ajoku in the 57th minute, Akwa however had the last laugh as Udoh struck what ultimately proved to be the winner in the 72nd minute. It was the strikers eighth league strike and Akwa after failing to win any of their first four matches are now unbeaten in seven matches and move up to second on the log.
Group B basement side Yobe Desert Stars got a much needed victory at home to Go Round FC to relieve some of the pressure around manager Ngozi Elechi. Desert Stars without a win in their last six league games secured a 2-0 win over the visitors courtesy of Philip Auta’s brace either side of halftime.
Over in Kaduna, Kabiru Sanusi’s 95th minute penalty helped Kada City see off Nasarawa United 2-1 at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium. The visitors had taken the lead in the 61st minute through Maigishiri Mohammed with the hosts drawing level through Nura Mohammed ten minutes later before Sanusi’s penalty ensured Kada left with all the points.
Abia Warriors drew 1-1 at home to Plateau United at the Umuahia Township Stadium. Oche Salifu gave Plateau the lead in the 51st minute while Paul Samson struck for the hosts in the 67th minute. In the Group’s final game, El Kanemi Warriors couldn’t make the most of their numerical advantage in their goalless draw at home to Gombe United who had Peter Ambrose sent off in the first half.
2018/2019 NPFL MATCH DAY 11 RESULTS
MFM 2-0 BENDEL INSURANCE
(Olawale Abisoye 39′, Michael Ohanu 58′)
WIKKI TOURIST 2-0 RIVERS UNITED
(Abba Umar 19′, Issa Gata 70′)
KATSINA UNITED 1-0 KWARA UNITED
(Martins Usule 13′)
SUNSHINE STARS 0-0 ENYIMBA
HEARTLAND FC 1-2 AKWA UNITED
(Chidiebere Ajoku 57′ – Ndifreke Effiong 4′, Mfon Udoh 72′)
FC IFEANYIUBAH 1-0 KANO PILLARS
(Uche Ihuarulam 66′)
YOBE DESERT STARS 2-0 GO ROUND FC
(Philip Auta 8′ (Pen), 57′)
KADA CITY 2-1 NASARAWA UNITED
(Nura Mohammed 71′, Kabiru Sanusi 90+5 (pen) – Maigishiri Mohammed 61′)
ABIA WARRIORS 1-1 PLATEAU UNITED
(Paul Samson 67′ – Oche Salifu 61)
EL KANEMI 0-0 GOMBE UNITED
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