Three games in the Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL matchday 26 fixtures were decided on Saturday.
All three encounters ended in home victories with a total of seven goals scored
The biggest win of the day saw Finidi George’s Enyimba bounce back from their defeat to Shooting Stars with a 3-0 trouncing of Gombe United in Aba Saturday evening.
The Peoples’ Elephant settled the game in the first half with goals from Emeka Obioma, Victor Mbaoma and Cyril Olisema.
Coach George made some changes to the squad that played against Shooting Stars during the week.
The duo of John Noble and Pascal Eze began the game while Captain Austin Oladapo started on the bench for the second consecutive game.
Enyimba started the game on a blistering note and could have gotten their first goal as early as the second minute of the game when Mbaoma’s shot was saved by goalkeeper Kazeem Yekinni.
Obioma’s shot slightly off the target in the fifth minute.
A minute later, Obioma finished with aplomb as he converted Yakubu Bilal’s pass to break the deadlock for the host.
The goal was a turning point for Enyimba’s attack as the Elephant crushed the Savannah Scorpion with another goal from Mbaoma in the 15th minute to record his 11th goal of the season.
Two goals against Gombe meant more work for the visitors to cover the deficit.
A chance by Gombe United’s Ahmed Jimoh to halve the deficit was parried away for safety by John Noble in the 22nd minute.
A jittery defence line of the Savannah Scorpions conceded another from Enyimba as Olisema punished the visitors from an erroneous clearance just before the half-hour mark.
Four minutes into the halftime, Yusuf Abdulazeez’s chance to pull one back failed as the forward fired wide out of range.
Though the second half wasn’t as action-packed as the first, Enyimba had done enough for the maximum points.
This latest win moved Enyimba to the sixth position with 38 points behind Akwa United while Gombe United stay in the ninth position with 35 points.
ALSO READ: NPFL Round-up: Plateau, Rivers United maintain title race as 3SC overcome Enyimba in Ibadan
Elsewhere, Niger Tornadoes came back from being a goal down to relegation battlers, Kano Pillars in Kaduna with a 2-1 victory.
Pillars scored the first goal through Rabiu Ali’s curling freekick in the fifth minute.
It was a sign of relief for the visitors who were hoping to pick points on the road after a long time.
Goalkeeper Bassey Akpan saved Najeem’s long-range shot in the 35th minute.
Two minutes later, Tornadoes missed another opportunity as Chinedu Ufere’s could not beat goalkeeper Akpan.
Tornadoes’ persistent effort paid off 12 minutes into the second half, as Jonas Emmanuel pulled them level.
But the hope of Sai Masu Gida to earn at least a point was dashed as Musa Wakili’s last-minute penalty sealed a comeback win for Tornadoes.
Niger Tornadoes moved to the 12th position with 33 points while Kano Pillars stay in the relegation zone in the 17th position with 26 points.
In Uyo, a lone goal was enough for Dakkada to deny Fidelis Ilechukwu and his boys a share of the spoils at the Nest of Champions.
Emmanuel Charles’ header in the 61st minute ensured Dakkada’s efforts throughout the game was rewarded with a crucial three points.
The away defeat means Plateau United failed to close the gap on Rivers United who will face Kwara United in Ilorin on Sunday.
The victory recorded by Dakkada took them up to the 14th position with 30 points while Plateau United maintain the second spot with 51 points.
Enyimba 3-0 Gombe Utd
Tornadoes 2-1 Kano Pillars
Dakkada 1-0 Plateau United
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