Another season of the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) is due to start today after a protracted break brought on by the organizational backlog.
In the first game of the season, Akwa United will host Bendel Insurance at the Uyo stadium with the Nigeria Football Federation president, Ibrahim Gusau and Interim Management Company (IMC) Chairman, Gbenga Elegbeleye, at the Nest of Champions in Uyo in attendance.
However, due to logistical concerns, the first matchday’s remaining games have been moved back one week.
Since the last game was played in July 2022, it took another six months for the organizers to approve the start of another season which according to the IMC will be shown on TV.
Meanwhile, Akwa United coach, Ayodeji Ayeni, his team is completely ready for today’s match.
He discussed the opportunities his squad had in the match as well as the hiring process the club had started after losing some important players during the league’s break.
In the same vein, Coach Monday Odigie, Bendel Insurance coach, is confident that his team can earn a promotion to the top division after an absence of 11 years.
Coach Ayeni acknowledged that the country’s clubs struggled as a result of the inconsistent start dates.
He disclosed that Akwa United has been preparing for training graduation for more than four months, from low to middle, from middle to high, etc.
The last time these neighbours met was 12 April 2008, when Bendel Insurance defeated Akwa United 3-2 in Benin. But the slim win wasn’t enough to stave off relegation as they finished 20th on the log with 39 points.