NWFL Premiership MD3 Previews: South East derby headlines decisive showdowns

In the riveting saga of the 2023/2024 Nigeria Women’s Football League (NWFL) Premiership, all eyes now shift to the captivating prospects awaiting on Matchday Three this Wednesday.

As the dust settles from two rounds of fierce battles on the pitch, the teams are laying bare their strengths, weaknesses, and dreams for the season. Statistical revelations further underscore the NWFL Premiership’s enterprising spirit and competitiveness, with three away wins and six draws in 16 matches.

From the resolute early leaders striving to maintain their unblemished records to the tenacious struggling sides fighting for redemption, the upcoming clashes promise a cascade of emotion-laden encounters that will undeniably mold the league’s future trajectory. The stage is set for a football spectacle where determination and drama interweave to create a compelling narrative for fans and players alike.

In Group A, the Northern-based sides, Naija Ratels and Adamawa Queens, find themselves in a precarious position after less-than-ideal starts to the season. Meanwhile, Confluence Queens, under the tutelage of Sabo Okala, seeks to solidify their form, and Abia Angels aims to extend their fairy-tale run in a South-East derby.

The clash between Dannaz Ladies and Nasarawa Amazons, both unbeaten, adds a layer of intrigue, showcasing the tactical prowess of managers Diana Asak and Christopher Danjuma.

Turning our attention to Group B, debutants Remo Stars Ladies, resilient in draws against tough opponents, faces the challenge of former champions Bayelsa Queens. Ekiti Queens, on the hunt for their first win, squares off against FC Robo Queens in a South West derby, while Sunshine Queens and Edo Queens seek redemption after recent setbacks.

The Matchday Three Star Match, showcasing Abia Angels and Heartland Queens in Aba, promises a riveting clash echoing a history of intense rivalries beyond football between these South Eastern neighbors. Amidst the unfolding league drama, each fixture serves as a canvas where both teams vividly express their aspirations and unwavering determination for NWFL supremacy.

Group A Matchups:

  1. Abia Angels vs Heartland Queens – Aba

Abia Angels, with a perfect start to the current campaign, faces a tough test against Heartland Queens in the first South East derby of the season in Aba.

In their inaugural encounter during the 2016/2017 season, the Aba-based ladies asserted their dominance, securing a double victory over their Owerri counterparts with convincing 2-0 wins in both legs of the meetings. Wednesday’s clash marks their third ever meeting in the NWFL Premiership and the first since 201.

Having won against Adamawa Queens and Royal Queens, Abia Angels aims to continue their winning streak. Heartland Queens, on the other hand, will look to recover from a 1-0 loss to Nasarawa Amazons, seeks to disrupt Abia Angels’ momentum at Enyimba Stadium.

  1. Confluence Queens vs Royal Queens – Iyamho

Confluence Queens, under Sabo Okala’s guidance, seeks their first home win as they face struggling Royal Queens at Edo State University in Iyamho. Royal Queens, yet to secure points, hope to overcome consecutive losses. The last league encounter between these teams ended 2-1 in favor of Confluence Queens, making this match a pivotal one for both sides.

  1. Naija Ratels vs Adamawa Queens – Abuja

Naija Ratels, reeling from early setbacks, aims for redemption against Adamawa Queens. After a 3-1 loss to Nasarawa Amazons and another to Dannaz Ladies, Ratels, captained by Nigeria legend Onome Ebi is eager to turn the tide. However, Adamawa Queens, also seeking recovery from a 3-2 loss to Abia Angels, won’t make it easy. With history favoring Naija Ratels in past encounters, expect a goal-packed encounter.

  1. Dannaz Ladies vs Nasarawa Amazons – Lagos

In a clash between unbeaten teams, Dannaz Ladies hosts Nasarawa Amazons. Dannaz Ladies, coming off a historic win against Naija Ratels, faces a tough challenge on back-to-back home game at Onikan. Nasarawa Amazons, after a 1-0 win over Heartland Queens, aims to secure a third consecutive win. The tactical battle between Diana Asak and Christopher Danjuma adds an extra layer of anticipation.

Group B Clashes:

  1. Remo Stars Ladies vs Bayelsa Queens – Ikenne

Debutant Remo Stars Ladies, resilient in draws against tough opponents, faces former champions Bayelsa Queens at the Remo Stars Stadium in Ikenne. After a 2-0 win against Ekiti Queens, Bayelsa Queens is riding high on confidence. Remo Stars Ladies, having held Rivers Angels and Delta Queens to draws, aims to consolidate their solid start.

  1. Ekiti Queens vs FC Robo Queens – Ado Ekiti

Debutants Ekiti Queens host experienced FC Robo Queens, searching for their first win in second home match at the Oluyemi Kayode Stadium in Ado Ekiti. Ekiti Queens, after a draw against Delta Queens and a loss to Bayelsa Queens, aims to make an impact. FC Robo Queens, bouncing back from a 4-1 loss, secured a 3-2 win against Sunshine Queens. This South West derby promises intensity as both teams seek crucial points.

  1. Sunshine Queens vs Edo Queens – Akure

Sunshine Queens, hungry for a win after two games, square off against Edo Queens, eager for redemption after missed chances against Rivers Angels. The Akure Township Stadium, witness to a 1-1 draw between Bayelsa Queens and Sunshine Queens, provides the backdrop for an intriguing battle between these neighboring and traditional teams. Anticipate a clash filled with determination and the quest for vital points.

  1. Delta Queens vs Rivers Angels – Asaba

Matchday Three will also feature another high-profile clash in Asaba as defending champions Delta Queens, led by Tosan Blankson, seek their first win after consecutive draws, hosting the formidable former winners Rivers Angels, managed by Ogbonda Whyte, fresh from a 3-1 victory over Edo Queens. Recent encounters, marked by close draws and even a penalty shootout in the Federations Cup, set the stage for a thrilling contest at the Stephen Keshi Stadium. Anticipate an intense battle between these two powerhouses vying for supremacy.