Nigeria Premier League preview for Week 13


by George Akpayen
Gombe United v Sharks


Bernard Ogbe’s Gombe United head into this game in 12th position on the log against in-form Sharks at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Stadium in Bauchi.
Pic: Sharks Senegalese defender, Pape Sane Ousmane Gombe have won all their five games at home this season while the Blue Angels have taken three draws on the road in five games with the remaining ending in losses. It will be difficult for Sharks to pick a result at Gombe.

Prediction: 2 – 1

Recent head-to-head
June 6, 2010: Gombe United 2 – 0 Sharks
January 30, 2010: Sharks 1 – 1 Gombe United February 7, 2009: Sharks 0 – 0 Gombe United September 14, 2008: Gombe United 1 – 0 Sharks April 12, 2008: Sharks 3 – 1 Gombe United December 9, 2007: Gombe United 0 – 0 Sharks August 17, 2006: Gombe United 3 – 0 Sharks June 3, 2006: Sharks 2 – 1 Gombe United December 18, 2005: Sharks 0 – 3 Gombe United June 12, 2005: Gombe United 0 – 0 Sharks September 14, 2003: Gombe United 3 – 1 Sharks March 26, 2003: Sharks 1 – 1 Gombe United

Niger Tornadoes v Enugu Rangers

The Flying Antelopes will seek to end their poor away run in which they are yet to score a goal this season. Enugu Rangers have an open window to dent Tornadoes at home considering that they are yet to win in their last five games – a scorecard of four draws and one loss. But with Alphonsus Dike’s men yet to hit the ground running on the road, the best from this game will be a draw

Prediction: 0 – 0

Recent head-to-head
March 13, 2010: Niger Tornadoes 2 – 0 Enugu Rangers October 10, 2009: Enugu Rangers 1 – 0 Niger Tornadoes May 2, 2009: Enugu Rangers 0 – 0 Niger Tornadoes December 17, 2008: Niger Tornadoes 0 – 0 Enugu Rangers May 25, 2008: Niger Tornadoes 0 – 0 Enugu Rangers January 6, 2008: Enugu Rangers 2 – 0 Niger Tornadoes March 18, 2007: Enugu Rangers 2 – 2 Niger Tornadoes January 20, 2007: Niger Tornadoes 1 – 0 Enugu Rangers August 7, 2005: Enugu Rangers 0 – 1 Niger Tornadoes February 26, 2005: Niger Tornadoes 0 – 1 Enugu Rangers August 1, 2004: Enugu Rangers 2 – 0 Niger Tornadoes April 3, 2004: Niger Tornadoes 1 – 1 Enugu Rangers May 25, 2003: Enugu Rangers 1 – 0 Niger Tornadoes February 1, 2003: Niger Tornadoes 3 – 0 Enugu Rangers

Kwara United v 3SC

Shooting Stars Sports Club (3SC) have been poor on the road with just one point from 15. But it will be a short trip from their base in Ibadan to Sagamu to face Kwara United, who were battered last weekend by Bukola Babes.

3SC have not beaten Kwara United in seven years on the road except for two draws last season and on April 16, 2005. But Kadiri Ikhana’s side will seek to return to winning ways.

Prediction: 1 – 0

Recent head-to-head
May 1, 2010: 3SC 1 – 0 Kwara United December 12, 2009: Kwara United 0 – 0 3SC September 24, 2005: 3SC 1 – 0 Kwara United April 16, 2005: Kwara United 0 – 0 3SC June 5, 2004: 3SC 3 – 1 Kwara United March 3, 2004: Kwara United 3 – 1 3SC

Dolphins v Kano Pillars

Five previous visits by Kano Pillars to Port Harcourt have ended empty-handed. Dolphins have the longest winning streak of four and will stretch that to five on Saturday when they play host to Kano Pillars. Dolphins have won all six games at home this season.
Prediction: 1 – 0

Recent head-to-head

May 22, 2010: Kano Pillars 1 – 1 Dolphins January 13, 2010: Dolphins 3 – 1 Kano Pillars July 15, 2006: Dolphins 3 – 0 Kano Pillars May 6, 2006: Kano Pillars 2 – 0 Dolphins October 22, 2005: Kano Pillars 2 – 1 Dolphins June 15, 2005: Dolphins 2 – 0 Kano Pillars July 25, 2004: Dolphins 2 – 0 Kano Pillars March 31, 2004: Kano Pillars 3 – 0 Dolphins August 2, 2003: Kano Pillars 2 – 1 Dolphins March 9, 2003: Dolphins 3 – 1 Kano Pillars

Sunday, January 23

Crown FC v Bukola Babes

It is the first topflight meeting between the two sides. Ganiyu Salami’s men are on a streak of four losses in their last five matches compared to Bukola Babes’ three wins, one draw and one loss. Coach Festus Allen of Bukola Babes is confident that his side can take something from this game in spite of having picked just a point from five games on the road.

Prediction: 2 – 1
Recent head-to-head
None

Heartland v Zamfara United

The Naze Millionaires will play their first game at their new home ground – the UJ Esuene Stadium in Calabar against Zamfara United. Heartland have been comfortable facing Zamfara as evident in their past four meetings at the Dan Anyiam Stadium in Owerri dating back to March 20, 2005.

Zamfara should drop back to the relegation zone after this game.
Prediction: 3 – 1
Recent head-to-head

June 28, 2010: Heartland 2 – 1 Zamfara United January 24, 2010: Zamfara United 1 – 0 Heartland June 3, 2009: Heartland 3 – 0 Zamfara United December 17, 2008: Zamfara United 0 – 0 Heartland March 5, 2008: Heartland 3 – 0 Zamfara United October 28, 2007: Zamfara United 1 – 0 Heartland August 27, 2005: Zamfara United 0 – 0 Nationale (now Heartland) March 20, 2005: Nationale (now Heartland) 1 – 0 Zamfara United

Lobi Stars v Ocean Boys

This is a game between (Ocean Boys in) 15th and (Lobi Stars in) 16th placed sides. The two teams are of equal strength considering their unimpressive start to the season. One of them will return to the drop zone at the end of this tie – and Ocean Boys look likely due to their form on the road of five losses in five away games.
Prediction: 1 – 0
Recent head-to-head

March 28, 2010: Lobi Stars 2 – 0 Ocean Boys November 18, 2009: Ocean Boys 1 – 0 Lobi Stars June 14, 2009: Ocean Boys 1 – 0 Lobi Stars January 11, 2009: Lobi Stars 2 – 1 Ocean Boys April 27, 2008: Ocean Boys 2 – 0 Lobi Stars January 9, 2008: Lobi Stars 1 – 1 Ocean Boys June 18, 2006: Ocean Boys 1 – 0 Lobi Stars June 7, 2006: Lobi Stars 2 – 1 Ocean Boys

Warri Wolves v Plateau Utd

The last time both sides met in the topflight was on August 21, 2004 in Jos and that ended in a 1 – 1 draw. The reverse fixture played earlier that year also ended 1 – 1. But Wolves were known then as NPA, and will pose a different opposition to Ndubuisi Nduka’s men who have continued their faltering start since their return to the Premier League.

Paul Aigbogun’s team should blow Plateau apart.
Prediction: 3 – 1

Recent head-to-head

August 21, 2004: Plateau United 1 – 1 NPA (now Warri Wolves) April 14, 2004: NPA (Warri Wolves) 1 – 1 Plateau United

Kaduna United v Enyimba

This is the number 130 game of the season on the calendar. It will be Maurice Cooreman leading Kaduna United out against his old team. Already, Cooreman’s side enjoyed a cup win over the Peoples Elephant last season and will want to add to the woes of the champions, who have started the season on a crawling note. Kaduna United are the only side to have scored in every game this season and will continue that run.
Prediction: 2 – 1

Recent head-to-head

February 21, 2010: Enyimba 1 – 1 Kaduna United February 14, 2010: Kaduna United 1 – 0 Enyimba April 5, 2009: Enyimba 1 – 0 Kaduna United November 23, 2008: Kaduna United 0 – 0 Enyimba August 2, 2006: Enyimba 4 – 1 Kaduna United May 21, 2006: Kaduna United 2 – 1 Enyimba



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