Enugu Rangers emerge champions of Nigeria Football League

Muhammed Tahir Hassan

Enugu Rangers emerged champions of the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) after defeating El-Kanemi Warriors 4-0 at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in Enugu on Sunday.

Chisom Egbuchulam scored a hat-trick and Osas Okoro got among the goals but their celebration was dampened by Ifeanyi Egwim’s horrific injury at the death.

Three minutes into the game, Egbuchulam scored from the spot after Bobby Clement’s shot at goal was blocked a hand in the El-Kanemi box.

That early goal set the tone for the rout as Osas Okoro netted the second on the stroke of half time to give Rangers a two-goal lead.

Egbuchulam then scored his 14th and 16th goals of the season in the second half to wrap up the game.

As for Egwim, he had came off the bench and copped a terrible injury in what appeared to be a slip though El-Kanemi goalkeeper Kazeem Yekeen was sent off and the hosts were awarded a spot kick which Egbuchulam dispatched.

The Flying Antelopes finished the season with 63 points to claim a seventh title but their first in 32 years since winning the Old First Division in 1984.

Rivers United and Wikki Tourists finished in second and third respectively after wins over Akwa United and Sunshine Stars.

Akwa United fell 1-2 at home to Rivers United. Frederick Obomate and Guy Kuemian scored for Rivers United with Fortune Omoniwari’s goal for Akwa United sandwiched in between those strikes. The win ensured that Rivers United will play in the Caf Champions League in 2017.

The Tourists scored twice in the half hour of their game to see off any kind of resistance from Sunshine Stars. Chukwudi Samuel and Mubarak Umar scored the goals to help Wikki finish third and win a place in next year’s Caf Confederation Cup.

However, at the deep end of the table, Warri Wolves join Ikorodu United as those relegated this season while the game between Plateau United and Heartland did not finish as the score stood at 1-1 as at the 75th minute.

MFM FC pulled off a 1-0 win over FC Ifeanyiubah to ease their relegation worries. Stanley Okorom fired in the winner 23 minutes into the game but both teams had players sent off. MFM’s Ifeanyi Ifeanyi was given the marching order on 33 minutes while FC Ifeanyiubah’s Kojo Baah saw red on 74 minutes.

The two dead-rubber games of the final matchweek produced four goals. Sunday Alimi and Yaya Kone Soumaila scored for Lobi as they won 2-0 against Nasarawa United while Ifeanyi Okoye’s late goal helped Niger Tornadoes earn their only away point this term in a 1-1 draw at Kano Pillars. Adamu Mohammed scored for Pillars in the first half.