NPFL: Kano Pillars aim to close gap in testing midweek fixture
Kano Pillars will attempt to close the five-point gap at the top of the Nigeria Professional Football League when they host FC Ifeanyi Ubah on Wednesday.
Pillars must fix a leaky defence line if they are to emerge with maximum points at home to FC Ifeanyi Ubah and move into second with Akwa United not in action.
Sai Masu Gida, third on the table, have conceded five goals in their last three league outings and must keep an eye on Yaya Kone, scorer of a hat-trick for Ifeanyi Ubah in a comprehensive home win against the champions in the last round.
The visitors will need to cage the impressive Junior Lokosa if they're to avoid dropping back into the bottom four.
League leaders Lobi Stars will be tested away at Abia Warriors.
The last three games between the pair were high scoring, a trend likely to continue in Omoku.
The ninth-placed Warriors, who are unbeaten in their last four, could end up in the top four and within touching distance of the leaders if they win, while Lobi could extend their advantage at the top of the table to six points.
Enugu Rangers will expect to improve their mid-table position when they host surprise-package Yobe Desert Stars.
The Flying Antelopes haven't enjoyed a particularly strong start to the season, but against an opponent who have being toothless on the road, pedigree, class and experience should count as they look to take all three points.
Rivers United welcome Heartland FC to the Yakubu Gowon Stadium in Port Harcourt in a bid to climb further from the relegation zone.
Rivers are winless in their last three games, a run which has coincided with them dropping to 14th with a negative goal difference.
Can they address their weaknesses against fellow strugglers Heartland?
They'll fancy their chances considering the visitors only ended their run of four successive defeats in their last home game thanks to a pair of penalties.
Elsewhere, Akure should come alive for the relegation battle between Sunshine Stars and Kwara United.
Coach Abubakar Bala enjoyed a winning start to his managerial career at United following a comeback win against Kano Pillars; it's momentum the Harmony Boys should build on as they attempt to climb off the foot of the table.
16th-place Nasarawa United should bank on their decent home form to improve their fortunes as they host Katsina United. However, the Lafia-based team must be wary of a Katsina side who are renowned scorers on the road. This could be one of the standout fixtures of the midweek games.