On Sunday, Rivers United were defeated 1-0 by Wikki Tourist at the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Stadium in Bauchi in the Nigeria Professional Football League match day 32.
The Pride of Rivers had a solid start, but a lapse in concentration allowed the home side to net the game-winning goal barely 13 minutes into the game with Manu Garba’s wonderfully executed shot.
Chijioke Akuneto, Nyima Nwagua, and Paul Acquah of Port Harcourt struggled to force their way back into the game, posing all sorts of threats for Wikki Tourist up front.
In the second half, Rivers United’s Morice Chukwu squandered two chances in quick succession before substitute Malachi Ohawume’s sharp drive sailed just past the far post.
#NPFL22 FT SCORES
Heartland 1-0 Akwa Utd
Abia Warriors 2-0 Rangers
Tornadoes 2-1 Enyimba
Kwara Utd 2-0 Katsina Utd
MFM 0-0 Lobi
Remo Stars 1-0 Gombe Utd
Dakkada 2-0 3SC
Plateau Utd 1-0 Kano Pillars
Wikki 1-0 Rivers United
Sunshine Stars 2-1 Nasarawa Utd
— League Management NG (@LMCNPFL) June 5, 2022
As they pushed for an equaliser, coach Stanley Eguma adjusted their approach to bring in Konan Ruffin and Solomon Okuruket.
The home fans thought they had stretched their lead in the 58th minute, but Denis Ndasi’s outstanding defending kept the scoreline at 1-0.
The league leaders were close to securing a share of the spoils late on, with a low driven attempt from Joseph Onoja and Solomon Okuruket, followed by a spectacular Morice Chukwu strike from distance, but were all denied the chance to find a way past Wikki goalie – Galadima.
After 32 games, Rivers United’s ten-point lead over Plateau United has been whittled down to only seven points.
Rivers United will now concentrate on the Rivers State AITEO Cup, where they will face Khana FC in the 2nd Semi Final on June 9th, 2022, before hosting Abia Warriors in an NPFL matchday 33 game at home the following weekend.