BY MFON PATRICK.
The 2016/2017 Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL, season is increasingly looking brighter for Akwa United FC following their impressive performances in recent league matches.
With five victories, four draws and four defeats in their opening 13 games of the season, the Promise Keepers who were bottom of the table after Match Day 5 have steadily moved up to 6th position on the league table and are six points behind leaders Plateau United.
Buoyed by their new found form, Akwa United arrived in Lokoja, Kogi State with renewed confidence to engage Niger Tornadoes of Minna in one of the Match Day 14 fixtures of the NPFL scheduled for Sunday 19th March, at the Lokoja Confluence Stadium.
Coach Abdu Maikaba has named 18- man strong squad for the match and the return of Alhassan Ibrahim from suspension will be seen as a big boost for the Uyo based side.
Alhassan has scored five goals in twelve matches for the Promise Keepers and much will be expected from the midfielder and his teammates when they face Niger Tornadoes on Sunday.
Coach Maikaba has revealed that his team is in Lokoja on a Special Mission which according to him will see them go for all three points.
“An away win here will be the turning points of our season.
We have established the understanding we needed and our ball play has improved greatly, so our mission is to pick as many points as possible away from home.”
“The league is very competitive and for us to stay in contention, we need to fight for every available point irrespective of the venue of the match”.
Akwa United is yet to win an away game this season and facing their host at a neutral venue presents a good opportunity for team to record their first win away from home this season.
In their previous six away matches, the Promise Keepers have drawn two and lost five, scoring two and conceding seven goals.
Niger Tornadoes who are placed 10th on the log will be hoping for a repeat of last season’s result which saw them humbled their visitors at the same venue but the new Akwa United under coach Maikaba looks more than capable of picking all three points at the end of 90 minutes on Sunday.
The Promise Keepers could further consolidate their position in the top six on the log if they avoid defeat in Lokoja.