NPFL Matchday 20 Recap: Sunshine Stars stun Plateau as Rivers United extend lead
Enyimba, Nasarawa United return to winning ways
The 2021/22 NPFL Matchday 20 took place after a two-week hiatus in the league, with some interesting results across the board.
Rivers United extended their lead atop the standings to two points as coach Deji Ayeni led his new Akwa United side to a 1-1 draw against them at the Nest of Champions in Uyo in their NPFL Matchday 20 fixture. Akwa United’s mid-season recruit Etim Matthew put the ball into the back of his own net early in the first half to give Rivers United a first-half lead before another new signing Adeyeye Adeyemi finished off a fine pass from Bello Babatunde, another of the new boys, to earn the Champions a 1-1 draw. Rivers United had goalkeeper Sochima Victor to thank for escaping with a point as the Promise Keepers came close on several occasions.
In Aba, Enyimba picked up a deserved 2-0 win over Wikki Tourist to ease some of the pressure on coach Finidi George. New signing Abel James opened the scoring for the People’s Elephant before striker Victor Mbaoma added a second for Enyimba in the second half.
Sunshine Stars picked up an impressive 1-0 win at home to high-flying Plateau United to end their visitors’ 11-match unbeaten run on NPFL Matchday 20. Captain Kolade Adeniji scored with a bullet header in the 78th minute to give the Owena Whales all three points with a statement win.
Lobi Stars marked new coach Baba Ganaru’s first match in charge with a very impressive 2-0 win at home to Rangers International. Ayagwa Raphael opened the scoring following a retaken penalty in the second half before debutant Godfrey Utim added a second in the 89th minute after a wonderful solo run by Chukwuka Onuwa.
Niger Tornadoes defeated Dakkada FC 1-0 in their NPFL Matchday 20 clash in Kaduna. Emmanuel Jonas got the game’s only goal in the 70th minute of the encounter to give the Ikon Allah Boys maximum points from the encounter.
Gombe United picked up a hard-fought 1-0 win over Kano Pillars at the Pantami Stadium. Barnabas Daniel scored the game’s only goal from the spot to give the Savannah Scorpions all three points.
MFM moved off the foot of the log for the first time since Matchday Six with a 1-0 win over Heartland in their NPFL Matchday 20 clash in Lagos. Micah Ojodomo’s first-half strike was enough to hand the Church Boys maximum points from the clash. They have been replaced in 20th place by Heartland.
Kwara United leapfrogged Remo Stars to fourth place with a 2-1 win over the Sky Blue Stars that puts them level on points with third-place Rangers. Haruna Hadi opened the scoring for Remo Stars before goals from Kabiru Balogun and Samad Kadiri gave the Afonja Warriors all three points.
Nasarawa United defeated Shooting Stars 2-0 in their NPFL Matchday 20 clash. Second-half goals from Adam Hassan and Shammasu Mohammed gave the Solid Miners all three points from the encounter.