With his club, Enyimba International of Aba, holding a temporary two-point lead on the log after one of Saturday’s Week 23 round of matches, Coach Kadiri Ikhana reckons winner of the 2015 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) may not be decided until last round of games. Leadership of Nigeria’s elite football league division has changed several times since the opening day of the season, with six-time champions, Enyimba, climbing to top of the standings after being forced to a 1-1 draw by Bayelsa United on Saturday.
Sikiru Kamal put the Aba Elephants in front 27 minutes into the game played at the Oghara Stadium in Delta State, but Bayelsa’s Raphael Onwurebe rallied to get the struggling hosts back on level terms three minutes before the break. Prodded on the likelihood of his team going ahead to win the title, Ikhana, who led Enyimba to victory in the 2003 CAF Champions League, admits the club are in the competition to win the title but averred that a twopoint lead on the table seems insignificant with 15 games left to be played in the season.
“It is good we got a point here (in Oghara against Bayelsa United), but I believe the season is still a long way to go,” the former Nigeria Under-23 team coach told journalists in Oghara. “We came here with the hope of collecting the maximum points. We came close to that, especially with Sikiru Kamal’s goal, but in the end we had just a point to go home with.
“Yes, we’re two points ahead on the log but I believe it doesn’t call for celebration yet. The season is still a long way away, but we have to keep working hard and see what happens next.” Saturday’s result took Enyimba’s point haul in the NPFL to 42 points, two more than second placed Sunshine Stars, who were playing Giwa FC at the time of filing this report yesterday.