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Nigerian Football

THE DWINDLING FORTUNES OF ELITE CLUBS IN AITEO CUP

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BY KUNLE SOLAJA.

One after the other, the big clubs tumbled as the Nigeria’s national football competition; the Aiteo Cup enters the quarterfinal stage. Only three Nigeria Professional Football League clubs remain at the quarterfinal stage.

Even then, at least one of them is doomed for elimination as Lobi Stars and Rivers United meet in Ijebu Ode. 

Barring upset, Kano Pillars could be the only top flight club that may  have been assured of a semi final qualification.

But in an age where the football fields are littered with the carcases of big clubs devoured by lesser-known teams, that qualification may not be automatic.

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Among the elite clubs that did not make it to the finals stage are cup holders, Rangers International, Wikki Tourists, Akwa United, Katsina United, Sunshine Stars and Delta Force. 

Others are Abia Warriors, Plateau United, and Nasarawa United.

AITEO CUP MEN’S QUARTER FINAL FIXTURES

Lobi Stars Vs Rivers United (Ijebu-Ode, 28 June, 3pm)

Niger Tornadoes Vs Smart City (Ilorin, 28 June, 3pm)

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Insurance FC Vs Calabar Rovers (Enugu, 28 June, 3pm)

Kano Pillars Vs Aklosendi FC (Kaduna, 28 June, 3pm)

AITEO CUP WOMEN’S QUARTER FINAL FIXTURES

Rivers Angels Vs Sunshine Queens

Delta Queens Vs Bayelsa Queens

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Nasarawa Amazons Vs Edo Queens/Olori Babes

Confluence Queens Vs Ibom Angels

AITEO CUP MEN’S ROUND OF 16 RESULTS

Cynosure FC 2 Niger Tornadoes 2 (Tornadoes win 5-3 after penalties)

Warri Wolves 0 Rivers United 2

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Lobi Stars 3 Abia Warriors 1

Smart City 1 Shooting Stars 1 (Smart City win 5-4 after penalties)

Insurance FC 1 El-Kanemi Warriors 1 (Insurance win 6-5 after penalties)

EFCC FC 0 Aklosendi FC 1

Plateau United 0 Calabar Rovers 0 (Calabar Rovers win 5-4 after penalties)

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Kano Pillars 0 Kwara United 0 (Kano Pillars win 4-2 after penalties)  

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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