The reigning Nigeria League champions, Enyimba, started their title defence on a losing note on Sunday as they were beaten 1-0 in Port Harcourt by newly christened Rivers United.
A second half free kick goal by Frederick Obomate was all the hosts needed to shoot down the champions at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium in Port Harcourt on Sunday.
Enyimba goalkeeper, Femi Thomas, had no answer to Obomate’s magical free kick in the 65th minute as that turned out to be the match winner.
Sunday’s loss means Enyimba have lost their last three games: first in the CAF Champions League tie at Uganda’s SC Vipers and then to cup holders Akwa United in the season-opening Charity Shield in midweek.
The trend will be worrisome for the fans of the Aba Elephants who would have wished to see their team hit the ground running especially with the investment made in players’ recruitment.
In other centres, it was a tale of shocks and dramatic contests as away teams had it nice in the opening weekend of contest in the NPFL.
In Ibadan, Kingsley Eduwo scored the goal that gave visiting Lobi Stars victory over Shooting Stars. Interestingly, Eduwo played for 3SC before leaving the Ibadan club.
Another away win was recorded in Jos where big spenders, Ifeanyi Ubah FC, beat Giwa FC 1-0.
Also newly promoted MFM FC started life in the top flight on a blistering note; defeating Nasarawa United 2-1 away from home.
El-Kanemi were also not spared the shock served on Sunday as they were beaten 1-0 at home by Wikki Tourist.
Sunshine Stars and Ikorodu United played 1-1 against Akwa United and Abia Warriors respectively.
The game in Kano was dramatic as Pillars came from behind to beat Enugu Rangers 2-1 at the Sani Abacha Stadium.
The winning goal for Pillars, scored by new signing Prince Aggreh, came in extra time.
Full results NPFL Week 1
Giwa FC 0-1 FC Ifeanyiubah
Nasarawa 1-2 MFM FC
Rivers Utd 1-0 Enyimba
Shooting Stars 0-1 Lobi Stars
Sunshine Stars 1-1 Akwa Utd
Ikorodu Utd 1-1 Abia Warriors
El-Kanemi 0-1 Wikki
Heartland 0-0 Wolves
Kano Pillars 2-1 Rangers
Plateau Utd 2-1 Tornadoes