Despite the late start the 2018/2019 Nigeria Professional Football League, the League is already in its closing stages with less than 3 matches left to be played, as of now nothing is yet to be confirmed in terms of relegation as well as Champions of 2019 due to the abridged format adopted this year.
Enugu Rangers and Akwa United sit pretty with healthy cushions at the top of Groups A and B respectively after Matchday 19 of the 2018/2019 NPFL season, however, just below them exists a state of constant flux as teams jostle for playoff spots and survival in what is shaping up to be an interesting run-in with plenty of surprises lurking in the shadows as the regular season approaches a close.
Twenty four teams were divided into two groups of six and there will be a top-six playoff between the top three teams from group A and group B with 8 teams relegating back to the Nigeria National League(NNL).
Across various match centres all over the season, fans of the local league have been entertained by the very best of footballers plying their trade in the country, albeit the lack of television coverage have denied millions of football fans all over the country to catch a glimpse of the brilliance of the talents in the league.
Therefore, we give you a list of players from the league who have proven their abilities this season.
- Chinedu Anozie
Club: Ifeanyi Ubah Fc
Chinedu Anozie has been a part of the ever impressive FC Ifeanyi Ubah young team this season, as they vie for the top three playoff spots available.
The shot-stopper has kept an impressive 10 clean sheets in 18 games this season, 2 more than Bendel Insurance Amas Obasogie who have 8 clean sheets.
It’s not a gainsaying that the goalkeeper’s performances this season is instrumental to their success so far.
- Ifeanyi Aneamena
Despite the exploits of players like Mfon Udoh in front of goal, here comes a defender who has so far managed to thrive.
The people’s elephant stop man is the highest goalscoring defender in the Nigeria Professional Football League this season. Ifeanyi Aneamena has scored five goals so far in as many games including a brace in the 3-1 victory over Enugu Rangers and a penalty against Wikki Tourist recently.
With few games still left to be played this season there is no doubting the fact that he can still add more to his tally.
- Sanusi Ibrahim
Club: Nasarawa United
At some point this season, Sanusi was the player atop the assist log with 6 assists just ahead of Akwa United’s Mfon Udoh who sit second.
However, the Nasarawa United Midfielder so far has added goalscoring to his midfield marshalling and has now scored 7 goals alongside Rabiu Ali, Phillip Auta of Yobe Desert Stars and Abba Umar of Wikki Tourists, all on the same number of goals.
In total he has now been involved in 13 goals for his team this season, becoming arguably their best player so far as they aim for the play-off places.
- Rabiu Ali
Club: Kano Pillars
Evergreen Rabiu Ali seems not to be stopping or slowing down anytime soon as the 37-year old Kano Pillars captain has been instrumental in the team scoring 7 goals this term.
Alongside Musa Ahmed in midfield, the CHAN Eagles captain is steering Kano Pillars as they bid to return to the CAF competitions next season.
- Nana Bonsu
While Fatau Dauda has been having an inconsistent season with Enyimba this season, his Ghanaian counterpart, Nana Bonsu has been exceptional for Enugu Rangers. He may not have the highest number of clean sheets but recording 6 clean-sheets in 18 games in the NPFL is no easy feat.
Also, his exploits in the CAF Confederations Cup this season where Rangers went 7 games unbeaten didn’t go unnoticed, as he has been invited into the Ghana National team’s preliminary squad for the 2019 AFCON.
- Seka Pascal
It will be a crime to list top performers in the NPFL this season without having a player from Rangers after their impressive run both in the league and in the CAF Confederations Cup.
Integral to their success so far where they top the Group A of NPFL is Godwin Aguda, Bright Silas, Micheal Uchebo and most especially Seka Pascal who recently won the April edition of the League Bloggers Award (LBA) player of the month.
The Ivorian star has 5 goals from many matches, while Godwin Aguda has scored 6 both being instrumental to the Flying Antelopes‘ excellent season.
- Mfon Udoh
Club: Akwa United
NPFL record goalscorer in a single season moved from Enyimba to Akwa United although in controversial circumstances and so far he has been a good bargain for the promise keepers.
So far he leads the race to be the highest goalscorer in the NPFL this season and after 18 games, the talisman has scored 9 goals averaging 1 goal every 2games.
Not only that, but he has also provided 4 assists all season long, propelling the team to the top of Group B as they aim for Continental football with support from a teammate, Ndifreke Effiong.