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Atshimene strikes late to send Akwa United five points clear in NPFL

Sunshine Stars stuns Kano Pillars as FC Ifeanyi Ubah hands Nasarawa United defeat

Charles Atshimene scored a 90th-minute penalty for Akwa United as they defeated Enyimba 1-0 in their NPFL Matchday 32 clash on Sunday. The Promise Keepers dominated the game at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium, with Enyimba goalkeeper Sabirou Bassa Djeri having a great performance in goal, repeatedly thwarting attempts by Akwa United to find the back of the net. The home side eventually found a breakthrough after Mfon Udoh cleverly won the penalty, which was slotted home by Atshimene, who now has 11 goals this season. Akwa United now have a comfortable five-point gap over the rest of the league, with six games left to play. Akwa United keeper Adewale Adeyinka kept his 16th clean sheet, a new record since the LMC took over the league in 2013.

Kano Pillars fell to a shock 1-0 defeat at the hands of Sunshine Stars at the Ondo State Sports Complex as the Akure Gunners are looking to try and avoid getting relegated from the NPFL this season. Sadeeq Yusuf scored the game’s only goal in the 57th minute to give them an important victory, and also further scupper the title hopes of Kano Pillars.

FC Ifeanyi Ubah defeated Nasarawa United 2-1 to derail the title hopes of the Solid Miners and boost their own chances of beating the drop from the NPFL. Nonso Nzediegwu opened the scoring for the Anambra Warriors after 28 minutes before Nasarawa United right back Chigozie Obasi equalised for his side just six minutes later. The home side found a 70th-minute winner through Uzochukwu Ifejiofor as they closed out an important win in their bid to avoid relegation from the division.

Abia Warriors secured a crucial 2-1 home victory against Kwara United to end a five-match losing run in the NPFL. Jide Fatokun opened the scoring for the Afonja Warriors after just 9 minutes with a sumptuous volley from 25 yards that flew over the head of the keeper and into the back of the net. Paul Samson equalised for the home side after 70 minutes, superbly volleying home a knockdown by Obioma Chukwuemeka from inside the penalty box in the 70th minute. Obioma got his name on the scoresheet in the 90th minute as he slotted home after a bit of pinball in the Kwara United box to give his side all three points.

Jigawa Golden Stars defeated Plateau United 1-0 thanks to a dramatic end to their clash at the Ahmadu Bello Stadium in Kaduna that saw substitute Bature Sanni score a 90th-minute winner for his side. Despite the win, Jigawa Golden Stars remain in the relegation zone, although they are level on points with Wikki Tourists and Sunshine Stars, the two sides above them.

Rangers defeated Wikki Tourists 2-1 to pick up a well-deserved three points at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in Enugu. Gods Power Aniefiok headed home a cross from Ibrahim Olawoyin to put the Flying Antelopes in front after just two minutes before Ugochukwu Ugwuoke doubled his side’s advantage after 20 minutes. Ernest Governor put the ball through his own net to pull one back for the visitors in the 41st minute. Rangers’ win leaves them just three points outside the continental places in the NPFL.

Lobi Stars defeated Adamawa United 1-0 at the Aper Aku Stadium in Makurdi to add to the misery of the Adamawa-based side. Nnamdi Mejuobi scored the game’s only goal in the first half to give Lobi Stars the win.

MFM FC were held to a goalless draw by Katsina United at the Soccer Temple in Agege. The result leaves MFM in 11th place on 44 points, three more than Katsina United have with six games of the NPFL season remaining.

Rivers United defeated Warri Wolves 2-1 in their NPFL Matchday 32 encounter to move up to third place in the NPFL. Emmanuel Ihezuo opened the scoring for the visitors just three minutes into the match before a Godwin Aguda brace in either half saw Rivers United clinch the victory.

Dakkada FC defeated Heartland 1-0 on Saturday in their NPFL Matchday 32 encounter at the Godswill Akpabio Stadium. Emmanuel Charles scored the only goal of the game in the 33rd minute to seal the win for the Chosen Ones.

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