NPFL: Enyimba defeat Rangers 3-1 in Oriental Derby

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Enyimba FC narrowed the gap between them and Rangers International FC of Enugu to just three points yesterday when the Flying Antelopes were brought down to earth in a 3-1 defeat in a Nigeria Professional Football League Oriental Derby played in Aba.

Playing in Group A, Enugu Rangers, who were on a long winning streak until they met Rivers United in midweek, fell to two goals by Enyimba’s Ifeanyi Anaemena and one by Jean Marie Guera at the Aba Stadium yesterday.

Anaemena opened scores in the 15th minute while Guera made it two three minutes later.

Godwin Aguda reduced the tally for the Aiteo Cup champions four minutes after the break, but Anaemena restored Enyimba’s two-goal lead in the 60th minute.

In Lagos, MFM defeated Rivers United 2-1 to maintain their third position on the table.

Rivers United, who beat Rangers 3-0 midweek, were expected to carry that form to the Agege Stadium, but Chijioke Akuneto’s fifth-minute goal ensured they went home empty handed.

In other Group A matches, Katsina United defeated Remo Stars 3-2 with Tasiu Lawal (Sixth and 32nd), Chinedu Ajanah (12th) accounting for the home team’s goals, while Victor Chidume (25th) and Mustapha Gbolahan (80th) scored for Remo Stars; Kwara United drew goalless with Lobi Stars, while Sunshine Stars beat Wikki Tourists 2-1.

Earlier on Saturday, Niger Tornadoes held Bendel Insurance to a goalless draw.

In Group B, Akwa United maintained their march to the play-offs with a 2-1 defeat of Nasarawa United with Mfon Udoh (39th) and Etboy Akpan (45th) cancelling Thomas Adesina’s 14th minute goal in Uyo; Gombe United defeated Abia Warriors 1-0, Heartland beat Yobe Desert Stars 2-0, IfeanyiUbah outscored Delta Force 2-1, while Kano Pillars were 1-0 better than Plateau United.

On Friday, Go Round FC held El Kanemi to a 2-2 draw in Maiduguri in a game, which saw fans of the home side holding Go Round FC hostage on the pitch. The team were later led out of the arena by a team of military men.

Despite the defeat, Enugu Rangers still lead Group A with 31 points followed by Enyimba on 28. MFM, Lobi Stars, Katsina United and Sunshine Stars are on 27, 24 and 23 respectively. Only the first three teams will make the play-offs.

In Group B, Akwa United lead with 31 points followed closely bf FC Ifeanyi Ubah on 30 points. El Kanemi are on 29 points, while Kano Pillars, Nasarawa United and Go Round follow on 27 and 25 respectively.

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