Thursday, January 21, 2010


Sharks v Enugu Rangers
This is a tie between third and 19th placed teams in which Sharks Football Club knows that anything short of a win would mean it remains in the relegation zone of the Premier League log. Last season in this corresponding fixture, the Blue Angels failed to pick the maximum points. Though the Flying Antelopes is yet to win a game on the road, the Enugu club has been impressive under Alphonsus Dike and has a chance of stealing a point away from Port Harcourt if the Blue Angels fails to fly like it has done since the start of this campaign.
Prediction: 1 – 1

3SC v Ranch Bees
In the past four years, this is the first time both clubs would be meeting in the top flight and it is not looking any brighter for both clubs in their quest to retain their status as Premier League sides at the end of the season. Shooting Stars Sports Club (3SC) is above relegation by its superior goals’ difference while Ranch Bees is two points ahead of the drop zone. Under Mutiu Adepoju as interim head coach, the Oluyole Warriors is yet to drop a point at home in two games and should take the full points a Bees’ side that has garnered just a point from 21.
Prediction: 2 – 0

Kwara Utd v Gombe Utd
The absence of Kwara United for two seasons in the top-flight has been responsible for both sides meeting just twice in the past four seasons. In those two games in the 2005 season, the Desert Scorpions holds the ace. When both sides met in this same game on September 2, 2005 in Ilorin, Gombe United forced its host to a goalless and went ahead to win the reverse fixture earlier played in March of same year by a lone goal. But with Justin Tenger under pressure to impress his employer, Gombe United might be in for a backlash.
Prediction: 3 – 1

Ocean Boys v Tornadoes
Ladan Bosso should make his return to Niger Tornadoes with a long trip to Ocean Boys after he completed a controversial move from Wikki Tourist last week. The management of Tornadoes may have to tell Bosso, whose record in the Premier League during visits to clubs based in the Niger Delta region has been far from impressive while at Wikki Tourist, that the Minna side has not lost in its last two visits to Ocean Boys including last season’s 1 – 1 draw at the Ughelli Township Stadium. But a win for Emmanuel Amuneke’s men would bring them close to the leading pack of the Premier League log.
Prediction: 1 – 0

Zamfara Utd v Heartland
In six head-to-head meetings between both sides, Zamfara United has won just once on October 28, 2007 in Gusau by a lone goal while Heartland Football Club has won 50 per cent of those six games. Kelechi Emeteole though may not have the complement of his full squad for this game due to some of his stars who have travelled out for trials, the Naze Millionaires still have enough quality to compound the woes of relegation-fighting Zamfara United. In December 2008, Heartland was able to pick a point off Zamfara United after a goalless draw and could improve on that performance to keep the pressure on leading sides such as Enyimba, Warri Wolves and Enugu Rangers accordingly on the league table.
Prediction: 0 – 0

Enyimba v Dolphin
This is going to be a difficult trip for Stanley Eguma’s men considering the form of the Peoples Elephant in Aba since the start of the season. The five-time Premier League winner is yet to concede a goal in six games in Aba and Dolphin Football Club does not look like a side that can break that fine run by Okey Emordi’s men, who have not hidden their ambition on winning the title this season. The last time both sides met in the top-flight was on December 3, 2005 in Port Harcourt and Dolphin FC triumphed by 2 – 0 while the reverse fixture earlier in the same year ended 2 – 1 in favour of Enyimba. But Enyimba is primed for this tie and should pocket all points on Sunday.
Prediction: 2 – 0

Wikki v Kano Pillars
Head coach of Kano Pillars, Salisu Yusuf, is beginning to heap the pressure on his players to start winning points away from home if they want to stand a chance of competing for this season’s title. That pressure might grow if Yusuf decides to look at Pillars’ past four visits to Wikki Tourist in which it has picked just one point though has never dropped a point in its past four home games against the Bauchi side. With Wikki in a coaching crisis and Kano Pillars lacking the zest to pick games in a away games having lost one of its strikers, Bello Kofarmata, to rival, Heartland Football Club, this game has a draw written all over it.
Prediction: 0 – 0

Sunshine Stars v Gateway FC
Last season was the only time that the two clubs faced each other in the Premier League. In the two legs, it has been a case of no victor, no vanquished. When the Rock City Boys made the trip of less than two hours to Akure from Abeokuta, it succeeded in picking a point after a goalless encounter. And in the reverse game earlier in the season, both sides had played the same scoreline of 0 – 0. But the clubs are under different handlers now and a different result should be expected in this game, as Gateway Football Club has been struggling in its away trips.
Prediction: 1 – 0

Kaduna Utd v Wolves
These sides met twice last year in the Premier League and those were the only two meetings in four seasons in the top-flight between both sides. Warri Wolves lost this same game by a 1 – 2 on March 18, 2009 while the reverse fixture had ended 1 – 1 in Oleh, Delta State three months earlier. But Wolves is a different side under Lawrence Akpokona and would seek the scalp of basement boys, Kaduna United, in this Sunday game. But the snag for Akpokona’s side is that in spite of all the big names in its fold, it is yet to win an away game this season compared to Enyimba and Kwara United, which are leading wins in away games with two each.
Prediction: 1 – 1

Lobi Stars v Bayelsa Utd
Sunday’s games in the Week 15 fixture would be rounded off with Bayelsa United’s trip to Makurdi to face Lobi Stars. In its past two visits to Makurdi, titleholder, Bayelsa United, has lost by a lone goal on both occasions including last season’s game on November 2, 2008. This Bayelsa United side does not look like the same that won the title last season coupled with its financial crisis Lobi Stars should capitalise by winning all points.
Prediction: 1 – 0

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