NPFL: Clubs Jostle For Playoff Spots, Survival On Final Day




By Amosu Adeboye, LAGOS

The final day of the 2018/2019 Nigeria Professional Football League regular season promises to be exciting with some clubs  battling for the playoff spots and other looking to maintain their top flight status.

Rangers have already picked one of the three  playoff tickets in Group A, while Akwa United and Kano Pillars have made it from Group B.

The Flying Antelopes will be away to Wikki Tourists  who needed maximum points to guarantee their safety.

Champions Lobi Stars who occupy second position in Group A with 34 points from 21 matches are away to already relegated Remo Stars at the Shagamu International Stadium.

Lobi Stars need to win the game to be sure of a  playoff spot but could still make in case third and fourth placed Enyimba and MFM fail to win their games.

Enyimba will be up against Kastina United who need to win  to escape the drop  at the Muhammadu Dikko Stadium.

MFM also face a   daunting task against Sunshine Stars in Akure with their hosts needing maximum points in the game to stay in the NPFL.

At the Yakubu Gowon Stadium,  Port-Harcourt,  Rivers United and Bendel Insurance who have 28 points each will slug out with the winner guaranteed of playing in the NPFL next season.

Kwara United will hope for a final day miracle when they take on already relegated Niger Tornadoes at the Bako Kotangora Stadium,  Minna.

In Group B, the battle for the final  Group B playoff slot is between three teams;  FC IfeanyiUbah (33 points)  Nasarawa United (30 points) and El-Kanemi Warriors (30 points ).

FC IfeanyiUbah will host log leaders Akwa United in Nnewi and need only a point to join the visitors and Kano Pillars in the playoff.

Nasarawa United will be up against already relegated Yobe Desert Stars in Damaturu, while El-Kanemi will be away to Heartland at the Okigwe Township Stadium.

Heartland need to beat the visitors to maintain their top flight status.

Abia Warriors also face the same scenario when they host Kano Pillars in Umuahia needing all three points to stay in the NPFL.

Go Round have their destiny in their hands as they host Gombe United   in Omoku. It is a winner takes all encounter as both teams are tied on 27 points and three points on the final day of action will be enough to escape relegation.

Former champions Plateau United  also face the  danger of playing in lower league next season as they need to get a positive result against Delta Force in Asaba.

MATCHDAY 22 FIXTURES
GROUP A
Sunday, May 26, 2019
Wikki Tourists vs Rangers
Rivers United vs Bendel Insurance
Remo Stars vs Lobi Stars
Niger Tornadoes vs Kwara United
Katsina United vs Enyimba
Sunshine Stars vs MFM FC

GROUP B
Sunday, May 26, 2019
Yobe Desert Stars vs Nasarawa United
Go Round vs Gombe United
Delta Force vs Plateau United
Abia Warriors vs Kano Pillars
FC Ifeanyiubah vs Akwa United
Heartland vs El-Kanemi Warriors




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