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Football | Nigeria

The Predictor previews Akwa v Plateau



The Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) continues this Sunday with table-toppers Plateau United squaring up against bottom-placed Akwa United. The match is live on SuperSport 9 from 4pm local time (5pm CAT).

There are just six games on offer this matchday as four teams feature on the continent.

Sunday, 12 February, 2017

LOBI STARS v KATSINA UNITED

This game represents a very good chance for Lobi to close the gap between them and the pacesetters and at the same time go four games unbeaten. Lobi have somehow found a way to stay solid at the back without conceding in 294 minutes in the NPFL and that is where Katsina United will have their work cut out.

Five goals in six games does not look good though Katsina United do have decent attacking players in Tasiu Lawal, Suleiman Ibrahim and Obinna Eleje. With Solomon Kwambe and Kingsley Eduwo in good form, I think it will be difficult for Katsina United to avois defeat.

My prediction: 2-0

NIGER TORNADOES v ENYIMBA

Enyimba and Tornadoes will meet for the 21st time in 14 years. Tornadoes have won 10 games out of the previous 20, one more than Enyimba. Tornadoes have had a fine run in their last four games including a first away win in six years when they won 1-0 at Remo Stars.

The Peoples Elephant have stayed within touching distance of the league leaders but will have to prove that they have the spine to put points on the board from away games. Enyimba have managed a point in three away games and that does not look superb if they want to challenge for the title this term. Tornadoes have real stars in Chidiebere Ajoku and Ebenezer Odeyemi who, I think, will make Enyimba's defence work over time.

My prediction: 2-1

AKWA UNITED v PLATEAU UNITED

This is a game I am sure most followers of the league have interested in as league leaders Plateau United face bottom-placed Akwa United at their Godswill Akpabio Stadium in Uyo. Akwa United's position at the base of the NPFL standings comes as a surprise considering the big names, players and coach, they have recruited. Playing against the leaders will sure come with a lot of pressure for Akwa United.

Akwa United will have to be at their attacking best against a team that can defend on the road as they last conceded an away goal in 228 minutes (three hours, 48 minutes) since Remo Stars scored against them on the opening day. The Promise Keepers will have to find a way to break that three-man centre and two wing backs style of Kennedy Boboye in their travels which I think will work to good effect for the Jos club.

My prediction: 0-0

EL-KANEMI WARRIORS v GOMBE UNITED

The only team that have come close to ending El-Kanemi's 100 per cent run at home since 10 April, 2016 are surprisingly Katsina United. It took a stoppage time goal by Sunday Anthony to preserve that run. El-Kanemi will seek for a 17th home win on the spin in the league at their Maiduguri stadium home where they have become invincible.

It is a northeast derby and I expect Gombe United to make it really difficult for Ladan Bosso's team to get the three points though I know the like of Samuel Mathias, Abraham Audu, Hussaini Bata and Bello Kofarmata will star depending on who Bosso starts for El-Kanemi. This should be a routine win for El-Kanemi as six previous meetings in this fixture have ended with Gombe United losing.

My prediction: 2-0

NASARAWA UNITED v ABIA WARRIORS

Nasarawa United in the past two seasons have always started poorly and this term has been no exception. After seven games they have managed just six points including one win. Now I think the Solid Miners will pick themselves up and start putting points on the board in their home games as Abia Warriors come calling.

Abia Warriors look a different team this time with an impressive attacking options in Sunday Adetunji and Godwin Zaki. This means Nasarawa United's defence often with Olayinka Onaolapo, Emmanuel Makama, Seun Sogbeso and lanky Jide Williams will have work on their hands. But Nasarawa United will steady themselves to edge this.

My prediction: 1-0

SUNSHINE STARS v ABS FC

Sunshine Stars surprised me and I am sure themselves with 1-1 result at Abia Warriors in midweek after dropping all three points at home to MFM FC on 5 February. So the Akure Gunners are going to face ABS, a team with similar style like MFM, full of running and determination.

ABS really do need to know that Sunshine Stars will need to win to get themselves away from trouble. I am backing Sunshine Stars to get back to winning ways though ABS will be hard as nails.

My prediction: 2-1

•The Predictor got TWO correct results out of six including one exact scores.



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