By Adeboye Amosu:
Nigeria Professional Football League champions, Plateau United, will look to make a bold statement on their title defence when they take on leaders Lobi Stars in a rescheduled matchday-17 encounter in Jos, today (Wednesday), reports Completesportsnigeria.com.
Lobi Stars sit at the top of the standings with 37 points, four more than Plateau United, although they have played a game less.
A win for the hosts will see them reduce Lobi Stars’ lead to one point and throw the title race wide open.
Plateau United who have struggled to replicate last season’s form which saw them win the title for the first time will need to be at their best to beat their in-form visitors who are unbeaten in their last six NPFL games.
The Jos club’s goalkeeper, Okiemute Odah reckons that they must up their performance from previous games to pick maximum points in the decisive clash.
”If there is ever a time that we need to raise our game and show that we are true champions, then it is now,” Odah told CSN.
“This is an important game for us as it will give us the chance to reduce the gap between us and Lobi Stars.
“If we fail to beat them, I think it will make our task of successfully defending the title difficult.”
The team who have led the table at mid-season have won the NPFL title in seven of the last 10 seasons a trend Lobi Stars want to sustain having emerged the mid-season champions already, and to forward Austine Ogunye, it is important to avoid defeat against their title rivals to sustain it.
“This game is not the last for the season but it is one we can not afford to lose. We want to keep the momentum going and we will fight hard to get a positive result,” he stated in a chat CSN.