The Nigeria Premier Football League has begun, and Matchday 1 produced 24 goals in 10 matches over the weekend.
The 2022/2023 season is an abridged league following the delay in the kick-off of the campaign.
The first game of the season, penultimate weekend, which was the curtain raiser and only game on January 8, was the 2-0 away win of Bendel Insurance over gone side, Akwa United in Uyo.
In the matches played on Saturday and Sunday, there were stunning away wins.
At the Rwang Pam stadium in Jos, Plateau United played out a 3-3 draw against Shooting Stars (3SC) of Ibadan.
Shooting Stars’ Joshua Akpam put the Ibadan side ahead in the sixth minute but barely two minutes later, Onyebuchi Ifeanyi restored parity for the home team.
Shooting Stars scored twice through Anthony Okachi and Akintunde Azeez in the 14th and 65th minutes respectively to lead 3-1.
Plateau United however ensured the game ended in a six-goal thriller with strikes from Izuchukwu Chimezie and Onyebuchi Ifeanyi.
Kwara United who adopted the Lekan Salami Stadium in Ibadan after their home ground was adjudged not up to the standards, were held to a scoreless draw against Gombe United.
Former champions and two-time CAF Champions League winners, Enyimba FC beat Nasarawa United 2-1 at the new Jos Stadium on Saturday.
The duo of Elijah Akanni and Imo Obot put the People’s Elephant ahead while Oche Josiah scored Nasarawa’s consolation goal three minutes before the full time.
Enyimba goalkeeper, Olorunleke Ojo saved a penalty from Ikenna Offor from the spot.
In Ikenne, Samuel Anakwe and Edidiong Ezekiel scored both goals as Remo Stars beat visiting El-Kanemi Warriors 2-0.
In Group B, Abia Warriors recorded a 2-0 away win against former champions, Enugu Rangers in an Oriental derby on Sunday evening.
Bello Lukman put Abia Warriors ahead from a great cross by Kalu Nweke in the 41st minute while Monday Yakubu got the second in stoppage time.
In one of the away wins last weekend, Nigeria Tornadoes defeated Wikki Tourists 2-0.
After a goalless 45 minutes, the visitors broke the deadlock through Idris Saidu’s well executed freekick in the 74th minute, before David Okoromi added the second with a tap home two minutes later.
At the Pantami Stadium in Gombe, Sunshine Stars of Akure scored a late goal to secure a 1-1 draw against newcomers, Doma United.
The home side was almost running out with a slim win until striker Ibrahim Yusuf guided home Lawal Murtala’s free-kick for a late equaliser.
Rivers United started the defence of their title with a 2-1 win over Lobi Stars at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium, Port Harcourt.
Maurice Chukwu put Stanley Eguma’s ahead in the 16th minute before the visitors equalised through Umar Ubah 10 minutes after the break. Kenechukwu Agu netted the winning goal from the spot in stoppage time to earn the defending champions all three points.
Bayelsa United and Dakkada shared the spoils at the Samson Siasia Stadium in Yenagoa with a 1-1 draw.
MATCHDAY ONE RESULTS
Enugu Rangers 0-2 Abia Warriors
Plateau United 3-3 Shooting Stars
Wikki Tourist 0-2 Niger Tornadoes
Rivers United 2-1 Lobi Stars
Kwara United 0-0 Gombe United
Doma United 1-1 Sunshine Stars
Bayelsa United 1-1 Dakkada FC
Remo Stars 2-0 El Kanemi
Nasarawa United 1-2 Enyimba
Akwa United 0-2 Bendel Insurance
Izuchukwu Okosi is a Nigerian sports and entertainment journalist with two decades of experience in the media industry having begun his media journey in 2002 as an intern at Mundial Sports International (MSI) and Africa Independent Television (AIT), owners of Daar Communications Plc.
In October 2004, Okosi joined Complete Communications Limited, publishers of Complete Sports newspaper and Complete Football magazine as a reporter and later script writer for the Complete Sports studio.
He worked there for 13 years until October 2017.
Okosi also worked various times as Correspondent, Content creator and Editor at Sports Market International Magazine, Opera News, All Nigeria Soccer Media and Iconic Media Watch.
He also undertook freelance writing gigs for some local and international organizations.
Okosi is a member of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Association of Movie Producers (AMP), Association of Voiceover Artistes of Nigeria (AVOA), Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) and Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).
He has been part of cast in some Nollywood movies and radio dramas including Blood Money 2, Scores To Settle, Dead End 2, Another Campus Tale and Battle Line.
Aside mainstream media and the entertainment industry, he has interests in scouting/unearthing of talents in the sports and creative sectors, exports business and property development.