By JUBRIL AROWOLO
It is the battle of stars just as it is also battle against relegation. It is also a South West war as all attention will be on Ibadan this Sunday as the Week 22 NPFL match between Shooting Stars of Ibadan and Sunshine Stars of Akure takes centre stage.
Interestingly, they are both fighting to avoid the drop; perhaps it will be a good way to redemption for the home team that has conceded eight goals in the last three matches and scoring just one!
Notably, this is about the first time in recent seasons that the build up to a similar fixture between two teams wouldn’t bring tension and apprehension beforehand.
A peaceful meeting was brokered by stakeholders earlier in the pre-season to address the often imbroglio and brouhaha that always attend the Shooting versus Sunshine Stars’ fixtures in the past.
The two teams are seen as ‘brothers’ from the Southwest but on the pitch they employ different tactics of excelling in their match situations.
Shooting Stars lost to Lobi Stars last week at the Aper Aku Stadium Makurdi by 3-0 so there’s no excuse for the Amoo Boys not to rise to the occasion this time around if they are serious about surviving the drop.
Sunshine Stars in turn won against Enyimba at the Akure Township Stadium amidst no spectatorship due to crowd troubles.
However, the latest addition to the Shooting Stars’ fold – the beach soccer Abu Azeez who joined the camp recently is expected to bring his experience to bear on the Week 22 fixture.
“We announced Abu’s singing on our twitter handle @official3SC after getting the final clearance and waiver to sign the player from the LMC” , a message from Shooting Stars’ management read.
Similar fixtures last season ended 2-1 apiece at both Akure and Ibadan, and this season, Shooting Stars lost 0-1 in Akure.
“Our old players Adesina Thomas and Otegbeye Ajibola will be filling out for the Owena Boys so we expect a warm welcome from the fans”, a message from Shooting Stars read.