NPFFL: Rangers begin title defence against Abia Warriors

Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) champions, Enugu Rangers, will begin their title defence against south-east rivals, Abia Warriors, at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in Enugu.

According to the NPFL draw conducted on Saturday evening by the League Management Company (LMC) which oversees the running of the Nigeria top division, the Flying Antelopes unlike last season when they began the season on the road at Kano Pillars will this time play hosts to Abia Warriors.

Interestingly, Abia has never beaten their more illustrious rivals in the top-flight in all of their six meetings since April 2014.

Federation Cup holders, FC IfeanyiUbah, will play on the road at four-time winners, Kano Pillars while two-time African champions, Enyimba, start their quest for an eighth Nigerian title at home to Sunshine Stars.

Last season’s runners-up, Rivers United, will begin their season in the league at home to El-Kanemi Warriors.

Three of the four promoted teams, ABS FC, Katsina United and Remo Stars play at home on the opening day fixtures.

It will be a clash of promoted teams when Katsina United play hosts to Gombe United who makes a return to the division after a two-year absence.

However, the draw threw up a repeat of one of last season’s opening day fixture between Shooting Stars and Lobi Stars. The latter won that game 1-0 with Kingsley Eduwo netting the winner for Lobi at 3SC.

The date for the commencement of the new season wasn’t conveyed by the LMC.


3SC v Lobi Stars

Kano Pillars v FC IfeanyiUbah

MFM FC v Niger Tornadoes

ABS FC v Akwa United

Rivers United v El-Kanemi Warriors

Wikki Tourists v Nasarawa United

Enugu Rangers v Abia Warriors

Katsina United v Gombe United

Remo Stars v Plateau United

Enyimba v Sunshine Stars