NPFL: Plateau, Enyimba lose, Remo, Dakkada win

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Plateau United’s slim chance of winning the Nigerian Professional Football League title flared up on Sunday as the Peace Boys, for the first time ever this season, failed to win a home game in the NPFL.

Coach Fidelis Ilechukwu’s men, despite a 90th-minute penalty, could only earn a 1-1 draw against Gombe United.

After a barren first half dominated by the hosts, Andrew Ikefe finally broke the deadlock in the 60th minute for Plateau United, but the lead only lasted 10 minutes as Ibrahim Yahaya fired Gombe United with a equalizer in the 70th minute.

Desperate for maximum points, Plateau United pressured the visitors and in the closing stages of the game they were given a lifeline with a 90th-minute penalty.

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Unfortunately, Nenrot Silas, who opted to take the decisive shot, fired wide to the chagrin of the fans who thronged Jos Stadium despite the rain.

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With the only point, Plateau United are still second on the log with 61 points from 34 games while Rivers United have 71 points from the same number of games.

In Bauchi, another identical score of 1-1 was also recorded between Wikki Tourists and Shooting Stars.

However, in this case, it was Oluyole Warriors who looked to be on their way to victory after Opeoluwa Olufemi scored the opening goal in the 53rd minute, but Idris Guda’s 90th-minute penalty kick earned to Wiki Tourists a share of the loot.

In Ikenne, Remo Stars defeated Lobi Stars 3-1.

Sikiru Alimi gave the Sky Blue boys a first-half lead with his 18th-minute goal against his former Markudi-based club who are prowling dangerously around the relegation zone.

Francis Odinaka leveled Lobi Stars just before the hour mark, but goals from Tolulope Ojo in the 64th minute and Samuel Anakwe 13 minutes later secured the three points for Remo Stars.

Maximum points from Sunday’s game moved Remo Stars to third place in the NPFL newspaper with 53 points, one more than fourth-placed Rangers, who were held to a draw on Saturday.

Dakkada also beat Akwa United 3-1 in the ‘Uyo Derby’ at the Nest of Champions to keep their survival hopes alive.

In other games decided on Sunday, Kwara United beat Sunshine Stars 1-0 at Ilorin in the presence of Super Eagles manager Jose Peseiro.

Junior Lokosa scored the only goal of the match for the Afonja Warriors who remain in search of a continental ticket.

Elsewhere, MFM put on a remarkable show; coming from behind to beat Enyimba 2-1 on Sunday.

Visitor Mbaoma had given the People’s Elephant the lead in the 52nd minute before Oladayo Alabi equalized from the penalty spot in the 64th minute and then Nduka David scored the winning goal in the 75th minute.

Despite the massive win, the Olukoya Boys remain entrenched at the bottom of the NPFL log with 36 points in 34 games and would need to get more wins to have any chance of beating the decline.

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