Doma United punch above their weight as they lock horns with Enugu Rangers; Insurance Stake Unbeaten Run As NPFL Week 7 Matches Loom

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Across 10 stadia, the 2022/23 abridged Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) will experience fireworks as MatchDay 7 fixtures hold this weekend.

Today in Group A, it will be the winless Nasarawa United against Kwara United while in Group B, one of the privately owned clubs in the league, Doma United of Gombe will be punching above their weight as they visit one of the traditional clubs, Enugu Rangers at the Awka City stadium. Wikki Tourists who recorded their first win of the season when they defeated Enugu Rangers 1-0 in the Week 6 match played last Sunday in Bauchi will be guests of Abia Warriors who bounced back to winning ways with a massive 4-2 win at Dakkada FC in Uyo.

Nasarawa Utd vs Kwara Utd

Nasarawa United, the only side that is yet to win a single game will return to their former adopted home ground, New Jos Township Stadium after Ahmadu Bello Stadium failed to offer them the ‘charm’ they need to succeed.

The ‘Solid Miners’ are in a race against time to pick up their first win after five losses and a draw in six games when they host Kwara United today. The Ilorin-based side have also not performed satisfactorily as they have won just a game so far. While Nasarawa United are last on the Group A table with a single point, the ‘Afonja Warriors’ are placed eighth on the log with five points from six matches.

Remo Stars vs Plateau Utd

The Sky Blue Stars as Remo Stars are known will attempt to secure a second league win over Plateau United but the 2017 champions who have a better record will seek to make it four victories over their hosts at the Remo Stadium in Ikenne. It will be an uphill task for the visitors as Remo Stars are in haste to recover their form after suffering another 0-3 loss at Akwa United. The huge loss came after the 3-0 humbling at Bendel Insurance in Matchday 4.

El-Kanemi vs Akwa Utd

El Kanemi Warriors and Akwa United have played 13 NPFL matches between them. El Kanemi Warriors have won six with Akwa United winning four with three ending in draws. Based on current form, Akwa United are favoured to get at least a point in this encounter as El-Kanemi Warriors who returned to the topflight at the end of last season have managed to win only one match and are already swimming in relegation waters. While Akwa United are fourth on the table with 10 points, Warriors are second from bottom with only four points.

Gombe United vs Enyimba

Gombe United and Enyimba have met 18 times in the NPFL. While the former has won only five of the fixtures, the latter has won nine with the remaining four matches ending in draws. However, buoyed by their performance in Benin City where they forced table topping Bendel Insurance to a 0-0 draw, Gombe United will fancy their chances this time against the ‘People’s Elephants’. But Enyimba who are third on the table with their eyes on Super Six will give United a run for their money. Meanwhile, Gombe United who are seventh on the table will be fighting to avoid another defeat as such an unfortunate outcome will push them deeper into relegation waters.

Shooting Stars vs Bendel Insurance

Bendel Insurance who are the only unbeaten team in the league will seek to earn their 6th win in 7 games when they visit Shooting Stars in Ibadan. The ‘Benin Arsenal’ who have been in imperious form all season will be meeting 3SC for the first time in the NPFL. But there was once a great football rivalry between the two sides in the 70s and 80s when 3SC was called IICC Shooting Stars. Insurance whose winning streak was halted at home in a 0-0 draw with Gombe United last weekend are still favourites in this encounter but 3SC who turned back Nasarawa United 2-0 will want to record back-to-back victories and improve on their position on the table. However, even if they drop the three points, Insurance will remain on top of the log because their closest rivals, Remo Stars are four points behind them.

Enugu Rangers vs Doma Utd

This match in Awka will be a litmus test for Doma United but the ‘Savannah Tigers’ who are still basking in the euphoria of their 2-1 victory over title holders, Rivers United, can’t be dismissed with a wave of the hand. In fact, Rangers must be wary of the debutants who ended Rivers United unbeaten run in the season. And the fact that Doma United are placed above them should be a source of worry for the ‘Flying Antelopes.’ While the newcomers are fifth on the table with nine points, their hosts are placed seventh with five points and minus three goals. Another interesting thing is that this will be the first meeting between the two clubs. This is no doubt a clash between ‘David and Goliath.’

Abia Warriors vs Wikki Tourists

Abia Warriors have traded tackles with Wikki Tourist 12 times with the hosts recording four victories as against six matches won by their visitors with two matches ending in draws. Warriors who started the season with an away win at Rangers suffered a dip in form but appeared to have recovered themselves as shown in the 4-2 thrashing of Dakkada FC in Uyo. Therefore, Wikki Tourists who only managed to win their first match last weekend must do something extraordinary to return to Bauchi with a point. While Warriors are third on the table with 12 points, Tourists are second to the last with only four points.

Lobi Stars vs Dakkada

Without doubt, Lobi Stars who sit on top of the group with 13 points are riding high but they will be up against wounded lions as Dakkada after a humiliating 4-2 loss at home will be all out for victory against the 1999 NPFL champions. On Head-to-Head, both sides have met five times with the ‘Pride of Benue’ running away three victories, a draw and one defeat which was the 1-2 loss suffered last season in Uyo. Lobi Stars who have recorded four wins in the current season including the 1-0 away win at Abia Warriors are favoured to win against Dakkada who are eighth on the table with four points.

Sunshine Stars vs Niger Tornadoes

It is a battle of mid-table teams as Niger Tornadoes plot to dim Sunshine Stars in Akure for the 9th time. Both sides have met 19 times with the Akure side winning 9, losing 8 and drawing 2 matches. In the current season, both sides have won two matches each but Sunshine Stars with nine points are in fourth place while Tornadoes with eight points are in seventh position on the table.

Meanwhile, the fixture between Bayelsa United and Rivers United has been put on hold due to the latter’s continental engagement this weekend. The title holders have a date to keep with Diables Noirs of Congo in the 2023 CAF Confederations Cup Group B match on Sunday in Brazzaville.


SOURCE: Complied by Daily Trust, Edited by Reel Radio

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