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Tears, joy as curtains fall on 2021 NPFL season

There was joy and tears galore yesterday as the 2021 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) season ended with some clubs winning continental tickets while others…

There was joy and tears galore yesterday as the 2021 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) season ended with some clubs winning continental tickets while others were relegated to the lower division.

At the end of proceedings, Enyimba and Kwara United recorded crucial victories to pick the remaining two slots to join Akwa United in the continent.

Without doubt the biggest winner was Kwara United who stunned and proved bookmakers wrong as they came in from the blues to snatch the Confederations Cup ticket from Nasarawa United and Kano Pillars.

In Uyo, Enyimba defeated Dakkada FC 3-1 to leapfrog Nasarawa United to end second on the table with a Champions League ticket to go with it.

Kwara United also cruised to 3-0 victory over Katsina United in Ilorin as they moved from sixth position to finish third to represent Nigeria in the Confederation Cup.

It was indeed tears for Nasarawa United who fell 0-3 at Abia Warriors to end their chase for a continental ticket on a miserable note.

Consequently, if the ‘Solid miners’ are to play in the continent next season, they must beat Bayelsa United in the finals of the Aiteo Cup on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the biggest losers yesterday were Kano Pillars who crumbled 0-1 at Heartland to end the season without a continental ticket.

They had gone into the last match in third position with a chance to win either a Champions League or Confederations Cup ticket.

And there were tears of joy in the camps of Wikki Tourists and Sunshine Stars who defeated Adamawa United and Rivers United 2-0 and 1-0 respectively to escape relegation on the final day of the season.

However, it was tears and sorrows for Jigawa Golden Stars and Warri Wolves who couldn’t survive the drop as they suffered 1-0 and 2-0 defeats respectively at FC IfeanyiUbah and MFM of Lagos.

This means, Akwa United, Enyimba and Kwara United will represent Nigeria in the continent while Adamawa United, FC IfeanyiUbah, Warri Wolves and Jigawa Stars will face life in the National League next season.

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