27 July 2017
Hosts, Rivers United were held to a 1 – 1 draw by neighbours, Akwa United in a rescheduled Matchday 22 fixture of the Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL, game held at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium, Port Harcourt on Wednesday.
The visitors needed a win in Port Harcourt to close in on runaway leaders, Plateau United while Rivers United needed the maximum points to stay clear of the Relegation zone even as they have endured a difficult season.
Akwa United took the lead in the 11th minute of play when Musa Newman jabbed home a loose ball inside Rivers United area with a side foot. The hosts levelled up three minutes later when Emeka Ogbugh’s headed home a vicious free kick by Ali Chiwendu.
The visitors missed an opportunity to regain their lead in the 20th minute, failing to convert a penalty kick. Rivers Goalkeeper, Sunday Rotimi had brought down Musa Newman inside the box which prompted the referee to award a penalty kick. In-form forward, Ibrahim Alhassan stepped up for the spot kick but the attempt was saved by Rotimi.
The second half produced no goal as both teams miss fired all through.
The result means Rivers United are just two points above of the relegation zone in a season that the pride of Rivers who campaigned in the CAF Champions League and CAF Confederations Cup have endured a difficult season.
Rivers United’s next game is a tricky away tie to struggling Rangers International this weekend at the Nnamdi Azikwe Stadium, Enugu.
Akwa United remain in the third spot and moved a point behind MFM FC ahead of their game against Elkanemi Warriors in Maiduguri.