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NNL season kicks-off Saturday as Racines host Papilo FC

Friday, 17 March 2017


Agege Stadium, Lagos will come alive from 4pm this Saturday, when AS Racines host Papilo FC of Owerri in the star match of the opening weekend of the 2016/2017 lower division, Nigerian National League (NNL).

This much was disclosed by NNL media officer, Amar Ignis, who stated in a press release that the game will bring back together two former Super Eagles players, as the home side, Racines are coached by ex-international striker, Victor Okechukwu Agali, while the visitors are owned by ex-national team captain, Nwankwo Kanu (aka Papilo).

While pointing out that Racines, owned by former board member of then Nigeria Football Association (NFA), Emmanuel Ibru, and Papilo FC both feature in the NNL’s Southern Conference, Ignis further disclosed that Saturday’s match will have a lot of side attractions.

“It will be an evening of fun and action, as football will be laced with music,” the NNL spokesman revealed, “Top of which will see Enormous Music artiste, Terry Apala and others thrill fans on the day.”

Ignis also stated that other matches in the South Conference of the NNL’s opening weekend are Abia Comets versus Warri Wolves in Umuahia, Akwa Starlets versus UNICEM Rovers of Calabar in Uyo, while Bayelsa United host Osun United of Osogbo in Yenegoa and Bendel Insurance receive My People FC of Lagos in Benin City.

In other fixtures of the NNL Southern Conference, Crown FC of Ogbomosho host Ikorodu United of Lagos, Delta Force of Asaba receive Heartland of Owerri, First Bank of Lagos welcome Go-Round FC of Omuko and Nnewi United play at home against Gateway United of Abeokuta.

In the NNL Northern Conference, the star match will be a Middle Belt derby, as FC Abuja host Mighty Jets of Jos, while other games will see FC Taraba tango Kwara United of Ilorin in Jalingo and Adamawa United welcome Yobe Desert Stars of Damaturu to Furore Township Stadium, Yola.

Also in the Northern Conference, Afe Babalola FC receive Sokoto United in Akure, FC Zamfara host Kogi United of Lokoja at Sardauna Memorial Stadium, Gusau, while FRSC of Abuja receive visiting Kaduna United.

Ignis, though, revealed that all matches involving Giwa FC of Jos are on hold, until Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) resolve their matter with the club’s proprietor, Ambassador Chris Giwa.
It means the former Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) side’s scheduled fixture at home against Jigawa Golden Stars of Dutse is on hold until further notice.
Nonetheless, Ignis concluded with a promise that this season in the NNL will be a lot more explosive than ever, and expressed enthusiasm that the opening weekend will be a precursor of high level excitement that is expected to come all through the new campaign.
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