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Remo Stars announce NPFL return with win in SouthWest derby

Ogunbote-tutored Sky Blues win away from home in season opener

Newly-promoted Remo Stars claimed a magnificent 2-0 win over MFM FC at the Mobolaji Johnson Arena in Onikan, Lagos in the first match of the 2021/22 NPFL season.

Having gained promotion following a stellar campaign in the second division, the Ogun state-based side employed veteran manager Gbenga “Oracle” Ogunbote to lead the side in their first season back in the NPFL.

As the match kicked off the 2021/22 NPFL season in Lagos, the visitors showed a high level of understanding and strung passes together to assert their dominance in the early stages.

Despite their clear dominance, Remo Stars struggled to create clear-cut openings as the first half petered out.

From the first whistle in the second half, Remo Stars showed a more ruthless edge and were rewarded in the 56th minute as 20-year-old winger Akanni Qudus scored the first goal of the new NPFL season.

A hopeful long punt forward from the Remo Stars’ defence was nudged on by striker Andy Okpe before a slip allowed Ifeanyi Ojukwu a run through on goal. The forward was held up by a retreating defender but managed to lay off the ball into the path of Qudus, who sidefooted a brilliant first-time effort into the far corner with MFM goalkeeper Osayi Kingdom a mere spectator.

MFM looked for an immediate response straight from kickoff as influential midfielder Akanni Elijah slipped Oyedele Adebayo in with a delightful reverse pass, but the forward was denied by Remo Stars goalkeeper Kayode Bankole.

Remo Stars defended resolutely as MFM tried to find a way back into the game to no avail, before sealing the three points late in the day.

A right-wing cross went through the goalkeeper’s legs and all the way to the back post where Andy Okpe applied the simplest of finishes to make it 2-0 to the away side in the 94th minute.

Remo Stars have now won against MFM for the first time in their history, having lost three and drawn one of their previous four encounters in the NPFL.

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