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NPFL matchday 17 preview and predictions

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Rivers United and Plateau are now entangled in a two-horse race for the league title, as the likes of

Remo Stars, Enugu Rangers and Akwa United are a bit far from them at the moment.

At the bottom, Dakkada will host Enyimba, Kano Pillars will battle Nasarawa United while Remo Stars and Sunshine Stars will be involved in a South West derby.

The Sky Blue Stars have been brought down to earth in recent weeks and results have been typical.

For Sunshine, they have continued to punch above their weights and look destined for a mid-table finish.

Gbenga Ogunbote will be facing his former side, while the much-talked about Deji Ayeni could express what he’s made of in a game like this.

Prediction: Remo Stars 1-1 Sunshine Stars

The Pride of Rivers are beginning to show the qualities of a champion after their crucial win at Kano Pillars during the week.

The traditional battle between Rangers and 3SC ended in a stalemate, which further raised concerns about the chances of the Ibadan side to beat the drop.

League leaders Rivers United have always dominated the home meetings in this fixture and are favorites to win yet again. In addition, 3SC's lack of a win in their past four league games puts them out of contention.

Prediction: Rivers United 2-0 Shooting Stars

A Northern derby in Katsina between these two sides. It will be recalled that it was the Solid Miners that ended Sai Masu Gida’s longstanding unbeaten home record some years ago.

Times have changed since then as Pillars have lost their fear factor and are currently in the bottom half

of the log. On the other hand, it has been mixed results for Nasarawa United this term.

Maybe this new ground might favor Pillars against Bala Nikyu’s men.

Prediction: Kano Pillars 1-0 Nasarawa United

Other games include:

Defending champions Akwa United will make a short trip to Okigwe and face Abia Warriors. Similarly, Enyimba will be in Uyo to face Dakkada.

In Lagos, it will be MFM against Kwara United, while title hopefuls Plateau United will host Katsina United in Jos.

On Saturday, Enugu Rangers and Heartland will face Gombe United and Niger Tornadoes respectively.

Heartland v Niger Tornadoes

Enugu Rangers v Gombe United

Remo Stars v Sunshine Stars

MFM v Kwara United

Rivers United v Shooting Stars

Plateau United v Katsina United

Kano Pillars v Nasarawa United

Wikki Tourists v Lobi Stars

Dakkada v Enyimba

Abia Warriors v Akwa United