After flurry of goals in the first matchday on Tuesday, hostilities return on Thursday June 6 when the second round of games resume at the 2019 NPFL play-offs at the Agege township stadium in Lagos.
The first game had started on a slow note with Enyimba edging Rangers by a lone goal but four first half goals in the second game between Kano Pillars and Akwa United, and a 3-1 victory by Lobi Stars over FC Ifeanyi Ubah in the last game produced a total of 7 goals in just over 270minutes.
It would be FC Ifeanyi Ubah who will get the chance to amend their 3-1 loss opening day loss when they face Akwa United by 3pm before Rangers would also try to salvage their title hopes against an inform Lobi Stars by 5pm while the day will be rounded off with a big clash between Enyimba and Kano Pillars.
AKWA UNITED V FC IFEANYI UBAH – 3PM
Akwa United coach, Rafael Everton would hope, the Anambra Warriors haven’t recovered from their loss to Lobi Stars as they face off in the first encounter on matchday 2.
The promise keepers will likely start star Striker Mfon Udoh who was lively as a first half introduction In the 2-2 draw against Pillars on Monday providing an assist. The match on Thursday will be the third meeting overall between the two teams who were in Group B in the regular season having shared a win amongst each other.
Meanwhile the Anambra Warriors will hope to keep their ambitions alive and will draw solace from the fact that they were victorious in the last meeting between both teams as well as Akwa United’s poor run of form which includes just 1 win in 5games.
A loss tomorrow will likely confirm FC Ifeanyi Ubah as one of the three sides who will go home empty handed after the Championship but they would hope striker and the team’s highest scorer this season with 6goals, Uche Ihuarulam will be in scoring mood when the match starts.
RANGERS V LOBI – 5PM
A clash between two teams who had similar paths all season long but with contrasting ends to the season is what the fans will be treated in the second fixture.
Both Rangers and Lobi represented Nigeria in the CAF Confederations Cup and the Champions League this season respectively only for both teams ro fall at the group phase.
However, while the flying antelopes are struggling for form losing three of their five matches showing signs of fatigue after a long season of football, Lobi Stars seem to be getting better as each game pass by, going unbeaten in their last ten matches, winning 4 and recording a draw in the rest.
Having met twice this season, Rangers are yet to beat Lobi Stars recording a draw in Enugu and losing by a lone in the reverse fixture in Markurdi, a win is non-negotiable for Rangers this time.
KANO PILLARS V ENYIMBA – 7PM
Agege fans will experience another derby for the second match day running having seen the Oriental derby on Tuesday. This is more anticipated as both teams are yet to face each other this season due to the abridged format of the league.
The last ecounter between both teams produced a 6-goal thriller as Pillars beat the people’s elephant in Aba and neutral fans will hope for more of the same by 7pm on Thursday.
Coach Usman Abd’Allah will hope his wards will compliment their opening day victory over Rangers with a scalp of pillars while Ibrahim Musa will be praying his players do not make the mistakes they made in the 2-2 draw against Akwa United, moreso as they will be without defender Ifeanyi Nweke who was red carded on Tuesday.