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Edo’s deputy governor to play against 3SC as Remo, Kada, Gombe battle for NPFL slots


Edo’s Phillip Shaibu will make history today in Aba when he becomes the first serving deputy governor of a state to play in a competitive national league match. Shaibu, an attacking midfielder, will line up for Bendel Insuarnce when they tackle 3SC of Ibadan in the last match of the Nigerian National League (NNL) Super Eight Play-Off holding at the Enyimba Stadium.

Insurance has already qualified to play ion the elite Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL) next season, but the Benin Arsenal say they will go all out to humiliate Shooting Stars in the last game of the competition.

Insurance are on top of the Southern Zone table following their 0-3 defeat of Delta Force on Sunday and Monday’s o-1 victory over Remo Stars. Shooting Stars on the other hand crashed 0-3 to Remo Stars on day one and secured a 2-1 victory against Delta Force. They must beat Insurance by at least 2-0 to have hope of qualifying for the NPFL.

Insurance have six points and four goals, second-placed Remo Stars have three points from their 3-0 defeat of Shooting Stars, the Ibadan soccer outfit is third with three points after their lone defeat of Delta Force, who are the weeping team of the zone.

Yesterday was rest day in Aba, with action to resume today with the undoubtedly match of the tournament between Shooting Stars and Bendel Insurance.
Speaking on the game against 3SC, Chairman of the Edo Sports Commission, Godwin Dudu-Orumen declared total war on Shooting Stars yesterday, saying that his boys will do everything possible to pick the maximum three points against in today’s game.

“We won’t joke with that game, it is a match we want to win, to prove a point. The rivalry between the two teams started as far back as 1971. It used to be between Vipers FC and WNDC, before it metamorphosed into that between Shooting Stars and Bendel Insurance.

“Our special player, the Deputy Governor of Edo state, will play in that match. We are going to take every minute of that match very serious. We have advantage over Shooting Stars as we played a draw in their home and defeated them in Benin in the second stanza of the regular season. For those who expect an accord match, they will be disappointed as there won’t be anything like that,” Dudu Orumen said.

In other games today, Remo Stars have the opportunity of subduing weaklings Delta Force to return to the NPFL. A win will see them through ahead of 3SC, which can only gain promotion if they defeat Insurance by more than two goals.For the Northern teams, the coast seems clear for Kada Stars and Gombe United to gain promotion, as the two teams have four points each against Real Stars and Kogi United’s one point.On Monday, Gombe United defeated Real Stars 1-0, while Kada Stars beat Kogi United 3-0. Gombe United and Kada City will qualify for the NPFL if their match today ends in a draw.

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Phillip Shaibu
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