MFM end Pillars’ unbeaten run; Lobi back on top

MFM end Pillars’ unbeaten run; Lobi back on top

The topsy turvy manner of exchanging leadership positions in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) continued on Sunday when Lobi Stars claimed a fairly comfortable 2-1 win over Wikki Tourists in Bauchi.

Gbenga Ogunbote’s men thus toppled Plateau United who earned a creditable 0-0 draw at Dakkada FC on Saturday.

The biggest story of Sunday was however that of unfancied MFM’s 3-1 win over Kano Pillars to end Ibrahim Musa Jugunu side’s 13-game unbeaten run and deny them the chance of going into the record books.

Here though are the details:

Enyimba 2-1 Abia Warriors

In-form midfielder Austin Oladapo gave Enyimba the lead in this feisty Abia Derby in first half stoppage time with a brilliant free kick but new signing Okon Otop levelled for Warriors after a sumptuous assist by Lukman Bello in the 58th minute.

Another player in a rich vein of form Stanley Dimgba however decided the game with his 76th minute strike to give Fatai Osho his first league win in charge of Enyimba.

Katsina United 2-1 Warri Wolves

Joseph Atule gave Henry Makinwa’s side the lead on the dot of half time before old warhorse Gambo Muhammad doubled the lead with an excellent strike ten minutes after the break.

Wolves’ go-to man Charles Atshimene halved the deficit with a 71st minute penalty but that was the much Evans Ogenyi side could muster in Katsina.

Akwa United 0-0 Rangers

180 minutes of top flight action in Uyo this weekend ended without a single goal as Rangers extended their unbeaten run in all competitions to eight games.

Rangers coach Salisu Yusuf deployed a 352 formation which stifled their hosts for most period in the game although they still had goalkeeper Opubo Japhet to thank with two impressive saves in the second half.

Akwa United’s local rivals Dakkada FC had played out a 0-0 draw on the same turf twenty four hours earlier.

Sunshine Stars 2-0 FC Ifeanyiubah

Midfielders Jide Fatokun and Anthony Omaka scored within the opening half an hour as Sunshine Stars raced to a two-goal lead in Akure.

There were no further goals in the second held as Sunshine Stars claimed a comfortable three points to move to fourth on the log.

Adamawa United 1-0 Heartland

After a goalless first half, Yakubu Adam however gave United a major lifeline in their battle against relegation when he poked home beyond Ikechukwu Ezenwa in the 64th minute.

The win was enough to give Adamawa temporary respite as they moved off the foot of the table, replaced by Nasarawa United.

MFM FC 3-1 Kano Pillars

Pillars got in front in Agege in fortuitous fashion. Midfielder Auwalu Ali Malam saw this 34th minute corner kick bizarrely dropped into his own net by goalkeeper Folarin Abayomi.

Striker Kabiru Adewole Adeniji equalised for MFM in the 52nd minute after good work by Ikechukwu Chimezie before substitute Clement Ogwu netted an exceptional brace to end Sai Masu Gida’s 13-game unbeaten run and end their own five games winless run.

Rivers United 1-0 Kwara United

Hosts United were frustrated for most periods but got the breakthrough after the hour mark when Cletus Emotan was tripped inside the box. Ivorian left back Konan N’gouan converted the kick to give United the slender victory.

Lobi Stars 2-1 Wikki Tourists

Utibe Arit gave the home side the lead in the 10th minute when he glanced Samad Kadri’s cross beyond Pius Ibrahim before Austin Ogunye doubled the lead with a penalty seven minutes before the break.

Full back Olayinka Onaolapo got the marching orders in his full debut for Wikki late in the game but there was still a consolation from Nasir Jibrin in referee Anietie Ferdinand Udoh’s return to top flight officiating after two years battling injuries.

Jigawa Golden Stars 1-0 Nasarawa United

Club’s poster boy Ali Kalla Maro shot his side in front on the dot of half time with a piece of magic. The winger picked up the ball in the opponent’s half, waltzed through the defence line before firing home.

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