NPFL: Matchday six derbies, match preview

NEWS DIGEST – The Nigeria Professional Football League returns this weekend with three derbies — the South West Derby; Oriental Derby and the North Central Derby.

In the North Central Derby the Lafia based, Nasarawa United, will host Lobi Stars at the Lafia City Stadium on Sunday.

The Solid Miners have under-performed slightly this campaign, after losing to Dakkada in Benin.

In previous meetings, Nasarawa United have won all six of home meetings with Lobi Stars scoring just twice in all the matches.

Both teams have met 18 times with
Nasarawa United winning seven matches while Lobi Stars won seven matches and they shared points four times.

South West Derby

In the South West derby, Shooting Stars and Sunshine Stars will lock horns for the first time after five years at the Lekan Salami Stadium on Sunday.

This is one of the most energetic derbies in the Nigeria topflight league, eye balls have been raised and tongues have been restless on who would come out victorious in the South West derby.

The Oluyole Warriors, the biggest of the two sides in terms of records, just regained her promotion to top flight while the Owena Whales have struggled to keep their league status every campaign.

In previous meetings, they have met 14 times with Shooting Stars winning six times and Sunshine Stars also recorded six wins and two ended in a draw.

Oriental Derby

To wrap up the long list of derbies in the NPFL this weekend, the Oriental derby takes center stage in Okigwe between Abia Warriors and Heartland.

Abia warriors lost 2-1 to MFM in Lagos, while Heartland labored to a 1-0 win over Wikki Tourists in Owerri in last match day.

Heartland, who are on a run of ten consecutive defeats on the road, will hope to be at their best to beat a side they have only beaten once in 13 past meetings in the topflight.

North Central Derby and other matches preview

The four-time league champions, Kano pillars will host Niger Tornadoes.

Pillars, without coach Salisu Yusuf who is now with the Super Eagles at the AFCON, will be seeking a response after last week’s disappointing loss to Sunshine Stars in Ijebu Ode.

Kwara United and unbeaten Rivers United will face off in Ilorin, a game of utmost significance on the NPFL log this weekend, Stanley Eguma’s Rivers United are still unbeaten in the league while Kwara United have lost once.

Remo Stars will be travelling to Ilorin for a date with Wikki Tourists while Rangers will be at the FC Ifeanyi Ubah international Stadium to host MFM.

Enyimba will face Gombe United in Gombe while Plateau United and Dakkada will face off at the New Jos Stadium on Sunday.

See full fixtures below:

Saturday January 15, 2022

Akwa United v Katsina United

Sunday, January 16, 2022

Abia Warriors v Heartland

Gombe United v Enyimba

Enugu Rangers v MFM

Kano Pillars v Niger Tornadoes

Nasarawa United v Lobi Stars

Plateau United v Dakkada FC

Rivers United v Kwara United

Shooting Stars v Sunshine Stars

Wikki Tourists v Remo Stars

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