Katsina United will hope to extend their unbeaten home record when they welcome Bendel Insurance to the Magnificent Muhammadu Dikko Stadium on Friday in one of the NPFL matchday 7 fixtures.
The match, which was originally billed for Thursday, has been moved to Friday because a PDP Presidential rally has been fixed on the same day at the Stadium.
Katsina United, who are still basking in the euphoria of the 3 – 1 home victory over relegation-threatened Niger Tornadoes, will look to make their home form 3/3 in the ongoing NPFL, when they square up against one of the NPFL newcomers ‘The Arsenal of Benin’ as they are popularly called.
‘The Changi Boys’, who are still unbeaten at home going to this match will do everything possible to make sure the unbeaten home record is maintained so as to improve their standing on the league table.
Insurance, on the other hand, have proved that they are side to beat having lost just one out of five NPFL games played thus far.
The team headed by former Nigeria U23 assistant coach Monday Odigie pipped CAF Champions League campaigners Lobi Stars 1 – 0 on Monday to record a massive morale booster going into this crunch tie.
The Katsina team will once again rely on Lukman Muhammed, who provided two assists, Tasiu Lawal who got two goals and Joshua Agboola, who had a hand in all the three goals scored against Niger Tornadoes to fire them to another important home victory.
Insurance assistant coach Baldwin Bazuaye, who tutored Katsina United in their first season back in the Nigeria top flight league, will return to the dugout at the Muhammadu Dikko Stadium for the first time with his home team after he resigned in 2018.
Charles Omokaro, the most experienced Insurance star, will face a fierce battle in the middle of the park against all action Usman Bara’u.
Katsina United has been dealt another big blow as their goalkeeper Kassaly Daouda is ruled out of this game after twisting his ankle in the last match against Niger Tornadoes.
However, the Super Eagles goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa has recovered from the facial injury picked up in Osogbo a week ago and may likely return to the matchday squad to replace the injured Niger goalkeeper.
Destiny Ashadi who resumed back to training two days ago is another major doubt as he has yet to be cleared to feature in this game.
Lukman Muhammamed, who is suffering from a back pain, may also not feature in this encounter
Katsina United coach Abdullahi Biffo told www.fckatsinaunited.com that his side are aware of the threat the visitors will pose and they have prepared for them.
“We are aware of their good form and the threat they may pose, that is why we have prepared very well for them,” he said.
“Every newly promoted team are always very difficult to play, but we have set our target, which is to win and pick the maximum points.”
This is the first time the two teams are going to meet in the Nigeria top flight league
Katsina United are fifth on the league table with six points from three games, while Bendel Insurance are seventh on the table with the same points
Form guides in the last 5 NPFL games
Katsina United – WLWLW
Bendel Insurance – WLDDD
Players to Watch
Katsina United – Tasiu Lawal
Bendel Insurance – Charles Omokaro
Venue – Muhammad Dikko Stadium in Katsina
Date – Friday, 8th January, 2019.
Time – 4pm