NPFL18 Match Day Three Preview: Rivers United vs Kano Pillars

Rivers United FC tasted defeat for the first time this season in midweek against the champions, Plateau United on match day two of the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL).
That reverse in Jos left a bitter taste in the mouth of many a Rivers United faithful but technical manager of the club, Stanley Eguma believes moving on swiftly from that setback will represent the logical step to take.
“We will keep that (defeat to Plateau United in Jos) behind us and then look forward to the next game (against Kano Pillars),” he began in an exclusive interview with the Rivers United FC official website, www.riversunitedfc.com.ng.
“We have to do better (against Kano Pillars) who are a very strong side.
“We have to map out strategies and the right formation that will give us victory in Port Harcourt,” he said.
Eguma’s sentiments about Kano Pillars appear to be based on solid foundations.
‘Sai Masu Gida’ have yet to lose this term and were only denied an opening day win against Katsina United by a stoppage time equalizer by Destiny Ashady in a rip-roaring 2-2 free for all decided at the Muhammadu Dikko Stadium, Katsina.
Normal service resumed at the Sani Abacha Stadium on match day two as Pillars cruised to a straightforward 2-0 win over Nasarawa United.
The four-time NPFL champions look extremely formidable this season with David Obiazo, Chinedu Udoji, Emmanuel Anyanwu and Kamal Sikiru providing a solid spine.
Nzube Anaezemba failed to hit expected heights with United last season but he has looked extremely lively this term in the colours of ‘Sai Masu Gida’ this term.
He will return to Port Harcourt with a point to prove while Junior Lokosa, a man who knows his way to goal, has proven to be one of the most exciting attacking prospects in the division this season.
Spokesman of Pillars, Idris Malikawa insists the Kano club will be taking to the Yakubu Gowon Stadium pitch on Sunday with the intent of winning.
“It is a vital match for us. Kano Pillars has a target this season and we want to accomplish it,” Malikawa submitted.
Only a very brave man will bet against fireworks and compelling drama in Port Harcourt on Sunday.
A potentially special game for the ages awaits.
Overview
Game: Rivers United versus Kano Pillars
Competition: Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL)
Match day: Three
Current positions of respective clubs on the NPFL log: Rivers United: 13th; Kano Pillars: 3rd
Date: Sunday, January 21, 2018
Venue: Yakubu Gowon Stadium, Port Harcourt
Time: 4 pm
**Live coverage**
There will be robust coverage of this game by our media team (that will include videos and photos from the venue) simultaneously via our official Twitter account  (@RiversUnitedFC) and official Whatsaap channel from 3:15pm on match day.
Form guide (last five NPFL matches)
Rivers United (DWLWL)
Rivers United 1-1 Plateau United (Away)
Rivers United 3-0 Gombe United (Home)
Rivers United 1-4 Abia Warriors (Away)
Rivers United 1-0 El Kanemi Warriors (Home)
Rivers United 0-2 Plateau United (Away)
Kano Pillars (LWLDW)
Kano Pillars 0-1 Nasarawa United (Away)
Kano Pillars 2-0 El Kanemi Warriors (Home)
Kano Pillars 0-3 Akwa United (Away)
Kano Pillars 2-2 Katsina United (Away)
Kano Pillars 2-0 Nasarawa United (Home)
Previous meetings (head-to-head)
Matches: Four (4)
Rivers United wins: One (1)
Kano Pillars wins: Two (2)
Draws; One (1)
Goals for: Rivers United: Two (2); Kano Pillars: Four (4)
Goals against: Rivers United: Four (4); Kano Pillars: Two (2)
Points accumulated (in competitive matches): Rivers United: Four (4); Kano Pillars United: Seven (7)
Details (Specific breakdown)
Game one: Rivers United 1-0 Kano Pillars (NPFL: Yakubu Gowon Stadium, Port Harcourt on April 17, 2016).
Game two: Kano Pillars 1-0 Rivers United (NPFL: Sani Abacha Stadium, Kano on August 21, 2016)
Game three: Rivers United 1-1 Kano Pillars (NPFL; Yakubu Gowon Stadium on February 22, 2017)
Game four: Kano Pillars 2-0 Rivers United (NPFL; Sani Abacha Stadium, Kano on August 3, 2017)

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