It was a day of change of guards on Sunday as Abia Warriors Football Club halted champions Plateau United’s impressive run in the 2017/2018 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) season.
Nigerian pilot reports that a 1-0 victory at the Umuahia Township Stadium ensured the title-holders from Jos were toppled from the top of the log.
Plateau United came into the NPFL week 3 encounter looking to preserve their unbeaten run, having recorded two wins from two games without conceding a goal.
However, the hosts had other ideas as they took an early lead through Samson Obi who stabbed home a lovely cross from Ozor Chinedu just three minutes into the encounter.
The result meant Plateau United slipped from second position to joint sixth with Abia Warriors on the league’s log at the end of Match Day 3.
However, the day’s outstanding result saw visiting Rangers International FC of Enugu stunning hosts Heartland FC of Owerri 0-1 at the Dan Anyiam Stadium.
Bright Silas put Rangers in front in the 10th minute, with Heartland fluffing a chance to equalise when Lucky Emariojake missed from the penalty kick spot just before half-time.
The result saw Rangers and Heartland swop places on the NPFL log with the former moving to 16th after securing their first win of the season
Heartland FC dropped to 18th position, having drawn two and lost one game.
Eight other matches were also played on Sunday, with Katsina United defeating Enyimba International Football Club of Aba 2-0 at the Muhammadu Dikko Stadium.
The hosts took the lead through Martins Usule in the 29th minute via a close range strike off Destiny Ashadi deflected free-kick.
Usman Barau doubled Katsina United’s lead from a well-taken long range shot in the 65th minute.
The result shot Katsina United to joint 10th with Kano Pillars, while Enyimba who are yet to record a win in the NPFL so far dropped further to 19th position.
Hosts Rivers United beat Kano Pillars 2-1 after Bamba Bakari put the Port Harcourt-based side in front in the 19th minute.
Junior Lokosa equalised for Pillars in the 32nd minute for his third goal of the season.
But Guy Kuemian restored Rivers United’s lead after a lovely assist from Oche Salefu in the 58th minute.
The result meant Rivers United moved into eighth position on the log, while the four-times champions dropped two steps, having won one, drawn one and lost one game so far.
Akwa United were 2-0 victors over visiting Yobe Desert Stars after two first half goals from Victor Mbaoma and Michael Ibe in the 30th and 32nd minutes respectively.
They moved to second position as a result, with Yobe Desert Stars in 13th position on the log with one win and two losses so far.
Lobi Stars continued with their fine form as they remained the only team unbeaten so far after defeating newcomers Go Round FC 1-0 in Makurdi through a Samad Kadiri 32nd minute goal.
The result moved the Makurdi-based side to the summit of the league, having amassed seven points with two wins and a draw so far.
NAN reports that Go Round FC slipped to 15th position on the log.
Also, El-Kanemi Warriors of Maiduguri thrashed MFM FC of Lagos 3-1 to move to fourth, while MFM dropped to 17th position on the NPFL log.
FC Ifeanyi Ubah were 2-0 winners over Kwara United as Godwin Obaje and Ekene Awasie scored in the 23rd and 54th minutes respectively.
It was a result which moved the Anambra Warriors to third position, with Kwara United who have no points from three games so far are bottom of the log.
Nasarawa United defeated Sunshine Stars 2-0 at the Lafia Township Stadium with a brace from Douglas Achiv for their first win of the season and 14th position on the log.
Sunshine Stars are in 12th with four points so far.
Hosts Wikki Tourists’ lone goal victory over Niger Tornadoes saw the Bauchi-based club moving to ninth position, while Niger Tornadoes are now joint-third with El-Kanemi Warriors.
NAN reports that a total of 19 goals were scored on Match Day 3 with nine home wins and an away victory recorded.(NAN)