FC Ifeanyiubah win derby, Itoya ruins Amapakabo’s return

By George Akpayen

FC Ifeanyiubah claimed a 2-0 win over Heartland in Sunday’s Oriental Derby in Nnewi as Imama Amapakabo’s return to Rangers with El-Kanemi Warriors ended in a 1-0 defeat in one of the matchday’s games.

Heartland came into the contest with their rivals on a poor streak of winning just twice in previous 10 league meetings while FC Ifeanyiubah have won seven of those head-to-head games.

Ekene Awazie and Pascal Seka scored a goal each for FC Ifeanyiubah to kill off any kind of resistance from the Naze Millionaires who were unlucky to see two of their attempts strike the woodwork.

The win pushes FC Ifeanyiubah into the top-half of the standings with 10 points from eight matches.

About 70 miles from the venue of the Oriental Derby, Amapakabo took charge of El-Kanemi for the first time in the NPFL since joining the club after international assignment with the Super Eagles at the 2018 African Nations Championship (CHAN).

Nura Mohammed who was a member of Nigeria’s CHAN team caused Rangers all kinds of problems but failed to do the most important thing in a football game – score.

All Rangers needed to edge past Amapakabo’s men was a Kelvin Itoya perfect finish with eight minutes to time.

Promoted sides Go Round FC and Yobe Desert Stars enjoyed slim 1-0 wins over Abia Warriors and Rivers United respectively. Okon Otop scored early for Go Round while Yobe Stars left it late when Philip Asuquo converted from the spot.

A 2-1 win for Kwara United over Katsina United ensured they moved out of bottom place. Quick goals from Emeka Godwin and Stephen Alfred at the start of the second half was followed by Martins Usule’s late goal for Katsina United which proved too little, too late.

Niger Tornadoes ended their poor run of five defeats on the spin with a 1-0 win against Nasarawa United. Former Kwara United man Segun Alebiosu scored the winner.

The game between Sunshine Stars and Kano Pillars failed to produce a goal as both teams share the spoils.

Matchday 8 of the NPFL continues in Jos on Monday when Wikki Tourists play hosts to Lobi Stars.