Behold, the best players in the Nigerian League

The debate has always raged as regards who the best players in the Nigerian League are so we on Naijafootball247.com decided to join in.

The thing about being one of the best in the Nigerian League is that as soon as you are discovered, you are no longer the best the league, but become one trying to make a mark somewhere in Europe, Asia or North Africa.

Suraj Ayeleso
In any case, we got some Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL experts together to come up with a working list of eighteen players who can be said to have been the best in the League for the just concluded season.

Between Andy Randa (Kontagora), Ayodeji Gbenro (Abuja), China Acheru (Port Harcourt), Anthony Ademondi (Aba) and Emeka Nwani (Lagos), every single club in the league was seen at least five times this season and this comprehensive list produced.

Feel free to disagree with us in the comments sections

Stanley Okorom
Goalkeeper: Suraj Ayeloso (Nasarawa United) - According to statistics he holds the clean sheet record in the league. Achieving such a feat when you do not play for a top 5 club is commendable. He kept 15 clean sheets this season, edging out the likes of Dele Ajiboye, Sunday Rotimi and Ikechukwu Ezenwa.

Daniel Itodo
Right Back: Stanley Okorom (MFM FC)- Was immense in Right Back for MFM FC this season. Defensively, he was top notch and was also an attacking threat. He also got on the score sheet a couple of times.

Stephen Eze
Left Back: Daniel Itodo (Plateau United)- The overwhelming choice for the position. His specialty was the long throws that fetched him 8 assists this season, but was he about just throwing balls in? Itodo is as good with his feet as he is launching bombs into his opponent’s box. Ever present in the Plateau United team.
Austin Opara

Center Back: Stephen Eze (FC Ifeanyi Ubah)- The late Stephen Keshi tried to recreate his Super Eagles’ Central Defense partner, Sunday Eboigbe in Azubuike Egwuekwe, but maybe we should have waited four more years. Eze is everything a coach should want in a Center Back- height, presence and tackling ability for the purists. He is arguably the most improved defender this season and surely merits his place in the National Team.

Afeez Aremu
Center Back: Austin Opara (MFM)- He was a silent worker in the heart of the defence for MFM. Good control of his defence, ball playing Center Back.

Midfield: Afeez Aremu (Akwa United)- Excellent defensive midfielder who shields the back four well and also links up well with the attacking players.
Ifeanyi Ifeanyi

Midfield: Ifeanyi Ifeanyi (Akwa United)- Arguably the best central midfielder in the country and a key component of Audu Maikaba’s Akwa United side. Solid in the tackle and a tireless worker, Ifeanyi has improved his game greatly. He was also part of the Super Eagles squad against Cameroon in a World Cup qualifier.

Midfield: Ibrahim Alhasan (Akwa United)- Cold blooded Attacking midfielder who can also play as Tre-quartista. Covers every blade of grass, good in the dribble, passing and scores the odd goal or two.

Ibrahim Alhassan
Midfield: Ikechukwu Ibenegbu (Enyimba)- Held the forte for Enyimba in midfield all through the season. Scored crucial goals too. His specialty was/ is the 25-40 yard pass. Good with both feet too and on the free kick.

Ikechukwu Ibenegbu
Striker: Stephen Odey: (MFM FC)- Young kid with a bright future in a youth MFM side that shocked all to finish second in the just concluded season. Odey scored 18 goals before his departure to Switzerland three weeks before the season ended. Showed great consistency.

Anthony Okpotu
Striker: Anthony Okpotu (Lobi Stars)- The veteran turned back the clock with some incredible return of goals which include three hat-tricks as he claimed the top scorer award with 19 goals. Known as an attacking midfielder in his early years, he has turned out to be a revelation in a striker’s role.

Substitutes

Ikechukwu Ezenwa (FC Ifeanyi Ubah): Super Eagles and FC Ifeanyi Ubah safe pair of hands. His appearances for his club though were limited due to Super Eagles’ call ups. Ever consistent in goal.

Stephen Odey
Osas Okoro (Rangers)- Started out as a winger but converted to a right wing back role by Chukwuma Agbo with great results. His transformation is remarkable and despite Rangers under-performing this season, Okoro was one of their shining lights.

Emmanuel Ariwachukwu (Akwa United)- He worked hard as a Center Back and covered well for other players. Was super consistent for Akwa United all season long

Rabiu Ali (Kano Pillars)- One of the shining lights in an otherwise schlocky season for the ‘Sai Masu Gida’. He led the line quite well for his team and also had a fair return in goals as his side failed to qualify to play on the continent.

Sikiru Olatunbosun (MFM FC)- Was immense in midfield for MFM FC and was played most times as an Advanced Playmaker and scored the odd goal for his side.

Kingsley Eduwor (Lobi Stars)- Formed a great partnership with Okpotu at Lobi Stars. Fine link up and hold up play. Scored a handful of goals too.

Sunday Adetunji (Abia Warriors)- Injury cut short a goal scoring campaign for him, but 14 goals for the Abia Warriors striker was enough to put him in the team of the season. A complete forward with a knack for scoring important goals.



Coach: Kennedy Boboye





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3 comments:

  1. MFM FC defender in the team? They conceded the highest number of goals in the top half.

    ReplyDelete
  2. He was great as a defender, the team was not great as a unit. I think that is the difference

    ReplyDelete