Plateau United & MFM in chancy NPFL title battle

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The two topflight sides stand a chance to be crowned Nigeria champions with Kennedy Boboye’s men currently holding the edge

Plateau United and Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries FC go head to head in a thrilling final day contest to decide a new winner of the Nigeria Professional Football League.

The Olukoya Boys boast of 64 points with one game to end the season – one point below Plateau United who have superior goals difference.

Nonetheless, both teams will represent Nigeria in next year’s Caf Champions League with ticket for the Caf Confederation Cup still up for grabs.

Also, there are two relegation places to be decided on Saturday as 13 teams are not assured of survival yet.

 Here is your complete guide to the NPFL run-in as the season draws to a close.



LEAGUE TABLE


Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
1 Plateau United (CCL) 37 18 9 10 47 25 +22 63
2 MFM FC (CCL) 37 19 5 13 41 39 +2 62
3 Enyimba 37 17 7 13 42 28 +14 58
4 Akwa United  37 16 9 12 43 30 +13 57
5 Kano Pillars 37 16 6 15 38 32 +6 54
6 Lobi Stars 37 15 8 14 42 38 +4 53
7 Nasarawa United 37 15 8 14 33 29 +4 53
8 FC Ifeanyi Ubah 37 15 8 14 38 37 +1 53
9 Enugu Rangers 37 14 11 12 39 42 -3 53
10 El Kanemi Warriors 37 17 2 18 37 42 -5 53
11 Rivers United 37 14 10 13 33 29 -4 52
12 Katsina United 37 15 7 15 37 37 0 52
13 Sunshine Stars 37 16 3 18 40 43 -3 51
14 Niger Tornadoes 37 15 6 16 29 35 -6 51
15 Abia Warriors 37 14 8 15 40 35 +5 50
16 Shooting Stars 37 13 11 13 32 36 -4 50
17 Wikki Tourists 37 15 5 17 35 41 -6 50
18 Abubakar Bukola Saraki 37 14 7 16 36 48 -12 49
19 Gombe United (R) 37 11 10 16 32 47 -15 43
20 Remo Stars (R) 37 7 8 22 27 48 -21 29

Key: (CCL) Caf Champions League place assured; Caf Confederation Cup place; relegation zone (R) = relegated


THE TITLE RACE


MFM FC

Plateau United currently lead MFM FC at the summit with one point, but MFM can emerge as champions should they win at El Kanemi Warriors and Plateau falter at home.

One interesting fact is that both teams were relegation battlers last season – with Fidelis Ilechukwu’s men needing a result against FC Ifeanyi Ubah on the last day at the Agege Stadium to avoid the drop.


AFRICAN QUALIFICATION


Mfon Udoh

MFM FC and Plateau United have qualified for next season's Caf Champions League, while Enyimba need a win to seal their place in the Caf Confederation Cup.

Enyimba currently occupy the space for Caf’s second tier club competition, but Akwa United are just a point behind them. The Promise Keepers must win against Kano Pillars and hope the People’s Elephants fumble against Katsina United.

There is a good chance, however, that both will find themselves in Africa. If they qualify for the final of the 2017 Federation Cup.

 


RELEGATION


3SC vs Nasarawa United

Remo Stars and Gombe United have been relegated and ABS FC are also in deep trouble.

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As it stands, Lobi Stars, Nasarawa United, FC Ifeanyi Ubah, Enugu Rangers, El Kanemi Warriors, Rivers United, Katsina United, Sunshine Stars, Niger Tornadoes, Abia Warriors, Shooting Stars and Wikki Tourists could get relegated on Saturday.

Just three points separate the 6th placed team and 17th ranked team on the log, so a win is crucial for these teams if they are to keep their survival bid alive.


FIXTURES


Round 38:

Time (WAT) Home Away Date
16:00 Remo Stars  Sunshine Stars Saturday, September 9
16:00 El Kanemi Warriors  MFM FC Saturday, September 9
16:00 Plateau United El Kanemi Warriors Saturday, September 9
16:00 Abia Warriors Rivers United Saturday, September 9
16:00 Akwa United Kano Pillars  Saturday, September 9
16:00 Gombe United Wikki Tourist Saturday, September 9
16:00 Nasarawa United ABS Saturday, September 9
16:00 Niger Tornadoes Shooting Stars  Saturday, September 9
16:00 Enyimba Katsina United Saturday, September 9
16:00 FC Ifeanyi Ubah Lobi Stars Saturday, September 9

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