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FEDERATION CUP

For the second time, Stephen Keshi Stadium hosts Federation Cup

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As it was in 2018, the Stephen Keshi Stadium in Asaba will again host the final match Federation Cup this year on Thursday, 15th June 2023.

The day will begin with the women’s final, between Cup holders Bayelsa Queens and multi-titlists Rivers Angels, which is billed to commence at 2pm. The men’s final, between 1978 champions Bendel Insurance of Benin and multi-titlists Rangers International of Enugu, will kick off at 5pm.

Football administrators, promoters, stakeholders and fans are already looking forward to one of the best finals in both men’s and women’s versions, with Rivers Angels and Bayelsa Queens the two teams that have represented Nigeria in the nascent CAF Women’s Champions League competitions – which underscores their strength on the home front.

Bayelsa Queens are the defending champions of the competition, having overwhelmed FC Robo Queens of Lagos in the final of the 2021 competition at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin City.

The ingredients are there for a fierce contest in the men’s final, with Bendel Insurance and Enugu Rangers having contested two of the most memorable finals in the history of the men’s competition.

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In what amounted to a stunning result that year, leaving bookmakers holding the short end of the stick, ‘Benin Arsenal’ dismantled the much-feared Enugu Rangers 3-0 in the 1978 final at the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos. Peter Egharevba scored the first goal through a long range free-kick that silenced the vociferous fans of the ‘Flying Antelopes’.

Three years down the line, Rangers exacted their revenge, with the peerless ‘Chairman’ Christian Chukwu leading the orchestra from the back as the all-white clad boys from Coal City won 2-0 with goals from Okwuchukwu Obiora and Ifeanyi Onyedika on a sunny afternoon.

Bendel Insurance have been in flaming form this season, unbeaten in the abridged Nigeria Premier Football League season and posting credible performances everywhere. Rangers International were on the back foot for the larger part of the first half of the season but picked up in the second stanza, and are sure to give their all in the final of a competition in which they love to soar.   

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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FEDERATION CUP

And now there are four chasing President Federation Cup

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Expectedly, one of the two remaining NPFL sides crashed out of the President Federation Cup after Kano Pillars out shot Sunshine Stars in a quarter-finals clash.

Both played 1-1 before Kano Pillars prevailed 5-3 on penalties.

EFCC of Abuja played a goalless draw with Kebbi United but lost out 4-3 on penalties. Kebbi United will now face another Northern sides, El Kanemi Warriors who also had a 2-1 win over Inter of Lagos.

In the semi-finals, Kano Pillars will face Abia Warriors, the sole survivors from the south.

Abia Warriors eliminated Sokoto United 5-4 on penalties after a 1-1 draw.

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Quarter-Finals Results

EFCC FC (FCT) 0-0 Kebbi United (Kebbi) – Kebbi United win 4-3 on penalties  

El-Kanemi Warriors (Borno) 2-1 Inter Lagos (Lagos)

Abia Warriors (Abia) 1-1 Sokoto United (Sokoto) – Abia Warriors win 5-4 on penalties

Sunshine Stars (Ondo) 1-1 Kano Pillars (Kano) – Kano Pillars win 5-3 on penalties

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MEN’S SEMI-FINAL PAIRINGS

Kebbi United (Kebbi) Vs El-Kanemi Warriors (Borno) – 19/06/24

Abia Warriors (Abia) Vs Kano Pillars (Kano) – 19/06/24

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FEDERATION CUP

President Federation Cup: Another Nigeria Premier League club is doomed for elimination

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Sunshine Stars and Kano Pillars at the NPL. One of them will be out of President Federation Cup on Wednesday

Only two clubs from the country’s elite division can reach the semi-finals of this year’s President Federation Cup competition, with two of the surviving trio, Sunshine Stars and Kano Pillars, going headlong against each other in one of the quarter-final duels scheduled for the Federal Capital, Abuja on Wednesday.

The venue to be is Area 3 Stadium, where one of the NPFL teams must bite the dust, paving way for the other to progress to the last four.

The other NPFL side, Abia Warriors, are up against giant-killers Sokoto United at the NFF/FIFA Goal Project field inside the MKO Abiola National Stadium Complex. Sokoto United eliminated two-time CAF Champions League winners Enyimba FC in the Round of 16.

El-Kanemi Warriors of Maiduguri will confront surprise packets Inter Lagos at the FCT-Bwari ground, while two surprise qualifiers, EFFC FC and Kebbi United tango at the Sani Abacha Stadium in Kano.  

MEN’S QUARTER-FINAL FIXTURES

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EFCC FC (FCT) Vs Kebbi United (Kebbi) – Kano – 05/06/24 – 4pm

El-Kanemi Warriors (Borno) Vs Inter Lagos (Lagos) – FCT-Bwari – 05/06/24 – 4pm

Abia Warriors (Abia) Vs Sokoto United (Sokoto) – FCT-Goal Project – 05/06/24 – 4pm

Sunshine Stars (Ondo) Vs Kano Pillars (Kano) – FCT-Area 3 – 05/06/24 – 4pm  

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FEDERATION CUP

How are the mighty fallen! Big names crash at President Federation Cup

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Only three Nigeria Premier League clubs are able to make it to the quarter-finals of the President Federation Cup following spate of upset recorded on Wednesday at the Round of 16.

Seventeen of the elite clubs entered into the national finals but only three of them remain. The figure is destined to reduce to at least two when the quarter finals are played.

 Kano Pillars will face fellow NPFL sides, Sunshine Stars. Further upsets could still be recorded as another Premier League sides, Abia Warriors will face Sokoto United.  

 Akwa United, struggling hard to evade relegation in the league fell 1-0 to Kebbi United in the Round of 16 just as Shooting Stars were shut out 1-0  by El Kanemi Warriors.

 The biggest elephants that fell were the Enyimba who lost 1-0 to Sokoto United. Rivers United lost 1-0 also to fellow NPFL sides, Sunshine Stars.

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President Federation Cup: MEN’S ROUND OF 16 RESULTS

Wikki Tourists (Bauchi) 0-1 EFCC FC (FCT)

Kebbi United (Kebbi) 1-0 Akwa United (Akwa Ibom)  

El-Kanemi Warriors (Borno) 1-0 Shooting Stars (Oyo)

Ikorodu City (Lagos) 1-1 Inter Lagos (Lagos) – Inter Lagos win 5-4 on penalties

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Kwara United (Kwara) 1-1 Abia Warriors (Abia) – Abia Warriors win 4-3 on penalties

Sokoto United (Sokoto) 1-0 Enyimba (Abia)

Sunshine Stars (Ondo) 1-0 Rivers United (Rivers)

Katsina United (Katsina) 1-1 Kano Pillars (Kano) – Kano Pillars win 8-7 on penalties

Quarter-Final Pairings

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EFCC FC (FCT) Vs Kebbi United (Kebbi)

El-Kanemi Warriors (Borno) Vs Inter Lagos (Lagos)

Abia Warriors (Abia) Vs Sokoto United (Sokoto)

Sunshine Stars (Ondo) Vs Kano Pillars (Kano)

President Federation Cup: WOMEN’S ROUND OF 16 RESULTS

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Bayelsa Queens (Bayelsa) 1-1 Nasarawa Amazons (Nasarawa) – Nasarawa Amazons win 6-5 on penalties  

Dannaz Ladies (Lagos) 0-1 Remo Ladies (Ogun)

Abia Angels (Abia) 0-4 Naija Ratels (FCT) – Benin City  

Heartland Queens (Imo) 0-2 FC Robo Queens (Lagos)  

Kwara Ladies (Kwara) 0-7 Delta Queens (Delta)  

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Sunshine Queens (Ondo) 2-0 Honey Badgers (Benue)  

Osun Babes (Osun) 1-1 Confluence Queens (Kogi) – Osun Babes win 4-3 on penalties

Edo Queens (Edo) 1-4 Rivers Angels (Rivers)

Quarter-Final Pairings

Nasarawa Amazons (Nasarawa) Vs Remo Stars Ladies (Ogun)

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Naija Ratels (FCT) Vs FC Robo Queens (Lagos)

Delta Queens (Delta) Vs Sunshine Queens (Ondo)

Osun Babes (Osun) Vs Rivers Angels (Rivers)

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