Wednesday, July 03, 2013

The Predictor - Monster tie re-opens Glo NPL

The Heartland - Enyimba encounter in Owerri is my signature match that re-opens the business end of the Glo Nigeria Premier League. The southeast derby definitely is the big game of this matchday but there will be three other regional derbies as well as one live match on SuperSport 9.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Heartland v Enyimba (Dan Anyiam Stadium)

Heartland have not beaten Enyimba since their 2-0 win in November 2009 including losing the reverse tie 0-1 in Aba last month. The Cup holders will fancy their chance as Enyimba have been poor on the road this term.

I think this game should produce sparks but few goals and the People's Elephant will win a point in Owerri since none of the new Enyimba signings will feature in this.

My prediction: 1-1

Sharks v Nembe City (Sharks Stadium)

One of the south-south derbies on this matchday takes centre-stage in Port Harcourt. Sharks dropped all points in Yenagoa in their first meeting leaving Gbenga Ogunbote's men bottom of the standings. Now they must start winning points to survive the stop.

I won't write off the Blue Angels taking the three points in this tie but they will be made to work for it by City.

My prediction: 2-1

Bayelsa United v Dolphins (Samson Siasia Stadium)

Ifeanyi Egwim and Osita Echendu got the goals that downed Bayelsa United in the first meeting between both teams this season. The Bayelsa club though will miss the impressive Gomo Onduku, who is away on international duty, but they will get the job done against Dolphins.

My prediction: 2-0

El-Kanemi Warriors v Kano Pillars (El-Kanemi Stadium)

The champions, Kano Pillars, hold a three-point lead at the top of the table and will be keen to stay up there. But the game at El-Kanemi presents them with a banana peel as they've not won in Maiduguri in their last three visits.

Pillars could still remain top but I believe their goals difference will take a hit after this match. El-Kanemi Warriors suffered a 0-2 loss in Kano in the first meeting this term, so I'll go for Zachary Baraje's men winning this.
My prediction: 1-0

Sunshine Stars v Warri Wolves (Akure Township Stadium; live on SS9)

Both teams will be without key players for this tie - Wolves without Oghenekaro Etebo and Azubuike Egwuekwe while Godfrey Oboabona, Dele Olorundare and Solomon Kwambe are unavailable for Sunshine Stars. All of them are on international duties.

I really do think there will be little to choose from between the two teams and I will look in the path of the Akure Gunners to win this by the odd goal as they will miss Olorundare who knows how to score at home.

My prediction: 1-0

Wikki Tourists v Lobi Stars (Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Stadium)

Lobi Stars have gone five matches without a loss but they face a tough trip to Bauchi where they've managed to earn a draw in seven previous league meetings. Wikki have dropped four points at home so far this term and I don't think they can afford losing more points at home considering they in the bottom two.

Lobi will be without left-back Ezekiel Bassey, who is with the Super Eagles preparing for the Chan qualifiers against the Ivory Coast this Saturday. But that shouldn't count as I expect Dominic Iorfa to put out a team that will take a point at Wikki.

My prediction: 0-0

3SC v Kwara United (Lekan Salami Stadium)

Adamu Yahaya's double in the first meeting ensured Kwara United got all points. 3SC have been strong at home since losing 0-2 to Heartland in May and I know they will put in every foot not to lose points to one of their biggest rivals.

Olufemi Oladapo is the only player missing for 3SC but that won't affect their rhythm as I expect Gbolahan Salami, Philip Asuquo, Moses Ogaga, Tony Edjomariegwe, Mutiu Adegoke and Ighodaro Osaguona to make impacts if they feature.

My prediction: 1-0

Akwa United v Gombe United (Uyo Township Stadium)

Akwa United suffered a 1-4 defeat in the reverse game of this clash, and will be happy to return to their home turf after playing their last home game in Oba near Onitsha. Gombe United are one of the teams in the top flight yet to pick a point on the road this season - Kaduna United being the other.

Gombe United have lost Bishop Onyeudo to Enyimba in the transfer window and I think they will have to start life without him on a losing note in Uyo.

My prediction: 2-0

ABS v Kaduna United (Kwara State Stadium)

ABS got bashed 0-3 in the reverse tie with centre-back John Uche netting a treble. But Uche might not star in this game as he looked to have left the Kaduna club for a new team in the transfer window. But ABS will care less as their season has been laced with topsy-turvy results at home and on the road.

ABS all-time leading scorer, Abdulrahman Bashir might use this game as a springboard to kick off his season after a disappointing first round. Returning winger, Effiom Otu-Bassey might feature as well. So I don't fancy the Crocodiles winning a point in Ilorin.

My prediction: 2-0

Enugu Rangers v Nasarawa United (Nnamdi Azikiwe)

I feel Nasarawa United might be in for a backlash after Rangers were disqualified from the Caf Confederation Cup on Tuesday. The Flying Antelopes will feel wounded and again, Alphonsus Dike's defensive approach of playing just one-man up front will put them up for the slaughter in Enugu.

Rangers have got enough quality in their playing personnel to score four in this tie and I'm backing them to do so. I don't have to mention names but the return of Senegalese centre-back, Pierre Coly from suspension should provide steel at the back for Rangers in what I think should be a cruise.

My prediction: 4-0

*The Predictor conjured up seven correct results including just one exact scoreline from the previous matchday.

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