Nine matches took place in Matchday 10 of the Nigeria Professional Football League which witnessed some brilliant performances from NPFL players who helped their teams earn valuable points.
While quite several players had a weekend to cherish, the league recorded the lowest number of goals (nine) since the season began on 30 September 2023.
Only 9 of the 18 teams over the weekend scored. The low output of goals was not down to strikers' lack of sharpness in front of the opposition goal post, rather it was due to the sheer brilliance of quite a number of goalkeepers who kept the forwards at bay.
The NPFL players 2023 have continued to show unwavering dedication and improvement as the battle of who wins the league, NPFL top scorer and NPFL goalkeeper of the season becomes a watchword.
Let's have a look at some of the best players over the weekend.
The 5 best NPFL players of Matchday 10
It was a weekend of top goalkeeping performances as Kingdom Osayi earned his place as one of the best NPFL players in the game week.
Doma United goalie Osayi was in top form as the Savannah Tigers played out a goalless draw against Remo Stars at Ikenne.
It could have been a different scoreline as Sikiru Alimi, top NPFL scorer, had a chance to put the hosts in front in the 10th minute, but a point-blank save by Osayi left the score goalless. Sixteen minutes later, Dayo Ojo was in a one-on-one situation with the goalie, who made another save to deny the Sky Blue Stars before the break.
Osayi continued to be the difference maker between the two sides, as Samad Kadiri's shot was saved by the goalkeeper five minutes into the second half. Osayi was called to action again by Sikiru, but the goalie tipped the ball over the bar in the 78th minute of the game.
Remo Stars continued their search for a goal, but Osayi kept them at bay to record his 8th clean sheet in 10 NPFL matches with two assists to his name.
Doma Utd players rush their GK, Osayi Kingdom to celebrate with him after another impressive performance against Remo Stars.
— POOJA!!! (@PoojaMedia) November 25, 2023
The result kept the Tigers on top of the NPFL table with 18 points after 10 matches while Remo Stars are 4th on the log with 16 points with an outstanding game.
Coach Hamza Abdul’azeez Abara and and his opposite number, Fatai Osho, lined up their teams over the weekend as Niger Tornadoes battled Akwa United to a 1-0 win.
Tornadoes had played four home matches this season with two wins and draws apiece. The Ikon Allah Boys' greatest undoing this term has been goal-scoring, with just two strikes at home in four games.
However, striker Bashiru Usman rose up to the occasion when his team desperately needed a win. He was a thorn in the flesh of Akwa United defenders, who kept him at bay in the first half but ultimately cracked as Usman found the net in the 64th minute.
His solitary goal earned Abara's team all three points, and he extended his goals to 3 in the NPFL top scorers table.
In the Kwara United vs. Gombe United game at Ilorin on Sunday evening, goalkeeper Adewale Adeyinka was in top form for his team.
Early in the second half, a clear foul in the box resulted in a penalty for Gombe United. However, Adeyinka dived correctly to deny Sadiq Shuaibu and kept the home side on course for a win.
His performances earned him a Man of the Match award at full-time to become one of the best NPFL players of Matchday 10.
The man considered as one of the safest gloves in the NPFL lived up to his tag as Bendel Insurance earned a valuable point away at Kano Pillars with a Man of the Match performance.
Obasogie saved a crucial penalty in the 13th minute to deny midfielder Rabiu Ali. The goalkeeper made many other series of saves in the game that helped Insurance come off with a point from the difficult Sani Abacha Stadium in Kano.
Ladies and gentlemen, Amas Obasogie 👏 pic.twitter.com/CBMe8LlpFd
— Zaddy of Benin (@zaddyofbenin) November 26, 2023
Kwara United striker Mohammed Alao had a terrific game that fans will cherish for a long time.
Aloa scored arguably the goal of the season contender in his side's fixture with Gombe United on Sunday evening.
A corner was swung in down the right flank which Gombe's defence cleared but met Alao who volleyed home with a beautiful technique to open the scoring for the Ilorin-based club.
This article was most recently revised and updated 3 months ago