Akwa United Football Club are top of the Nigeria Professional Football League for the first time this season after being held to a goalless draw by hosts Sunshine Stars on Match-day 19 at the Agege Stadium in Lagos on Saturday afternoon.
With 33 points from 18 games, and with a game in hand, the Promise Keepers are top of the log on superior goal difference over Kwara United and Kano Pillars who are also on 33 points but will play their Match-day 19 games on Sunday.
Sunshine Stars versus Akwa United’s game which was originally fixed for Sunday 4th April was brought forward to Saturday 3rd April by the League Management Company LMC, and was played at the Agege Stadium after Sunshine Stars were found guilty of breaching LMC’S guidelines on security and were banished from playing at Akure Township Stadium.
The enthralling encounter saw the two teams creating and missing plethora of goal scoring chances, and the two goalkeepers were also at their best to keep their respective sides in the game.
Coach Kennedy Boboye, in a post-match interview said his team should have done better to grab all three points.
“We came here with one intention which was to win. My boys played well and created wonderful scoring chances but failed to bury them. I think if we had put in a little more effort, we would have won the match.
“It was a tough game considering the opposition we faced. Sunshine Stars are a good side and they gave us a real test today. It was an open game that could have gone either way.
“Victory would have taken us to 35 points and we would have opened a two points gap at the top but it wasn’t to be. I wish to congratulate my players for their efforts. We have taken a whole lot of positives from this game and it will help us to plan for the return leg. Now, we will get back home and keep working hard so we can achieve our target’.
Coach Kennedy Boboye’s team continued their impressive run of form and extended their unbeaten run to eight matches comprising five victories and three draws. They also improved their record on the road this season with two wins, four draws and three loses in nine away games.
The goalless draw means Sunshine Stars have now played 12 consecutive NPFL matches without a win (six draws and six defeats) and they have managed just one goal in their last nine matches.
Both teams will square up against each other in the return leg fixture on Match-day 20 which will mark the resumption of the second stanza of the season.