Pillars, Nasarawa United Push For NPFL Crown


Champions Kano Pillars
lead a four-club push to win the Nigeria Premier League title for the 2013/2014 season.
With 13 rounds of matches still to be played, Pillars could well make history if they win a third straight league title this term.
But second-placed Nasarawa United, six-time champions Enyimba and Dolphins are also within striking distance of the current league leaders.
Pillars are top of the standings with 43 points from 25 matches thanks in part to their superb form at home.
They would therefore stay in contention for the championship if they maintained their good run at home and at the same time nick a couple of crucial points on the road.
After barely escaping relegation last season, Nasarawa United are now is serious reckoning for a first-ever league championship after a late home win over Heartland last weekend.
The Lafia club is two points adrift of Pillars and their rise to the top must be partly because of the hard shift put in by Coach Mohammed Babaganaru, who led Pillars to two league titles in the past two seasons.
But like it is the norm in this league, they have to also improve on their form away from home to boost their chances of an historic conquest.
Enyimba is lurking in third place with 40 points and have the vastly-experienced coach Kadiri Ikhana again at the helm as they aim to add to the number of championships they have won.
They have quality across the squad, from defender Ugwu Uwadiegwu to strikers Mfon Udoh and Abdulrahman Bashir, and once they move to the top of the standings, they will be very difficult to topple.
Enyimba’s opponents in the 2014 Federation Cup final Dolphins are fourth with 39 points.
The Port Harcourt outfit has won the league thrice, in 1997, 2004 and 2011. But they will now need some favour from the other title contenders to slip to be champions again.
What is obvious of the title contenders are that besides the quality they have on the pitch, they all boast of top-rated coaches, who have all won the championship – Okey Emordi (Pillars), Babaganaru (Nasarawa United), Kadiri Ikhana (Enyimba) and Stanley Eguma (Dolphins).
Probably, this season’s league crown would be won largely by the tactics of one these coaches.