Completesportsnigeria.com’s Nigeria Professional Football League expert ADEBOYE AMOSU rates the teams participating in the Super Six ahead of the competition which starts on Monday…
All eyes will be on the Jos side to see if they can replicate their impressive showing in the Nigeria Professional Football League last term in the 2017/2018 campaign. The Super Six competition provides Kennedy Boboye’s charges the opportunity to lay down a marker ahead of the new season.
Supporters of the club are already concerned with their darling club’s pre-season form with defeat against El-Kanemi Warriors followed by successive losses to Kano Pillars and Kwara United in the Ahlan invitational tournament in Kano.
The club also failed in their pursuit of experienced forward Gambo Mohammed but have also brought in new players to improve the quality of the team.
The Olukoya Boys head into the competition in fine form after beating amateur club 36Lion 3-1 in the final of the South West pre-season competition at the Agege Stadium on Friday.
The Lagos side have replaced top striker Stephen Odey, who has joined Swiss club FC Zurich, with former Remo Stars hitman Victor Mbaoma.
Mbaoma looks to have settled down in his new environment after registering goals in pre-season games and already formed a perfect understanding with his new strike partner Sikiru Olatunbosun.
With the likes of Chukwuma Onuwa, Stanley Okorom, Tchato Gichard, Jonathan Zikiye, Waheed Adebayo and other key stars still at the club, MFM look good to win the Super Six and at least banish the memory of the disappointment of missing out on the title last season.
Enyimba despite a troubled start finished third in the Nigeria Professional Football League last season and will compete in the CAF Confederation Cup next year. That was however not enough for coach Gbenga Ogunbote to keep his job.
Paul Aigbogun is back at the club for a third stint in charge and will be keen to make a statement this time around after a not-too-impressive outing in his two previous stints.
The Peoples Elephant have kept some of their key players like Mfon Udoh, Joseph Osadiaye and Stanley Dimgba.
The arrival of Super Eagles goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa has further added competition in the team, while highly-rated Ghanaian defender Tofic Umar has also linked up with the team following the expiration of his contract with Ghana Premier League club Aduana Stars.
The Aiteo Federation Cup winners will look to win the competition which could set the template for what it is to be expected in the new season for them. In Abdu Maikaba they have one of the most astute coaches in the local league. There is concern though about Maikaba’s shared responsibility as Golden Eaglets coach causing distraction.
Their only major addition has been Matthew Etim who joined them from Enugu Rangers, while they have been linked with former NPFL top scorer Godwin Obaje.
One big loss for the Promise Keepers is defensive midfielder Afeez Aremu who has joined Ghana Premier League outfit Inter Allies.
The four-time Nigeria Professional Football League champions endured a torrid outing in the top flight last term, finishing in the eighth position. They have enjoyed an impressive pre-season exercise which points to a sign of good things to come ahead of the new season.
The Sai Masu Gida won the Gold Cup pre-season competition in Ilorin and are also in the final of the Ahlan Cup.
Influential stars Rabiu ‘Pele’ Ali,Gambo Mohammed, Chinedu Udoji, Chris Madaki and Idris Aloma are still around, while they have also acquired the services of towering defender Stephen Eze from FC IfeanyiUbah.
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The team will look to use the competition to perfect their preparations for the African Nations Championship. It will be strange for some of the players will be up against their clubs.