Nine months after the 2019/20 season was brought to a prematured end due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020/21 campaign kicked off in different stadia the country.
MFM 2-1 Warri Wolves
At the Agege Stadium, Lagos, Mountain of Fire & Miracles (MFM) FC got their season to a great start with a 3-1 victory over Warri Wolves.
With just seven minutes on the clock, Odeyemi Ebenezer’s firm header off a cross from Akintunde Bala put the Olukoya Boys in front.
The visitors pressed hard for an equalizer but it was the hosts who extended their lead midway into the half when Muyiwa Balogun’s shot was deflected into the net.
Wolves’ good play was however rewarded shortly after when John Paul Chinedu got on the end of a brilliant Ihuarulam’s cross to pull one back for the visitors.
Nasarawa United 2-1 Wikki Tourists
Nasarawa United did not make matters easy for themselves on matchday one as the Lafia-based side had to come from a goal behind to claim an excellent 2-1 win over visiting Wikki Tourists.
Two quick-fire goals in the opening seven minutes set Lafia ablaze as both teams went for each other’s jugular early enough.
Chinedu Udeagha finished off a deceptive Manu Garba cut-back to give the away team take the lead but the home side respond almost immediately Reuben Nicodemus squeezed the ball in from a very acute angle.
The forward then grabbed his brace shortly after interval, turning expertly in the box before shooting past goalkeeper Nwabali, to hand Nasarawa Utd the lead for the first time in the contest.
Adamawa 1-1 Kano Pillars
Title hopefuls Kano Pillars were held to a 1-1 draw away win at Adamawa United, in a game were either side missed clear chances to secure all three points.
Mai Su Gida took a first-half lead on Sunday afternoon thanks to Rabiu Ali’s sublime finish as the veteran forward seems to get even better with age.
But in the 75th minute, Adamawa got back in the game thanks to a huge slice of fortune.
Isa Garba’s shot from range took a wicked deflection off Abdullahi Musa and landed in the net for the home side’s equalizer.
Plateau United 0-2 Kwara United
Plateau United, who finished top of the NPFL league table last term, began their campaign in the worst possible way, falling 2-0 in Jos to Kwara United.
The Ilorin-based visitors took a shock lead just past the hour-mark when Jide Fatokun directed his header on target from close range following the home team’s failure to clear their lines.
Michael Ohanu then headed home from a Kabir Balogun assist to make it two-nil to Kwara United five minutes later.
Ifeanyi Ubah 1-0 Lobi Stars
After a goalless first half, Ifeanyi Ubah needed just two second-half minutes to open the scoring against Lobi Stars, when Nonso Nzediegwu pounced on an Uzochukwu Ifejiofor assist to slot into the net.