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Saturday, July 13, 2024

Enugu Rangers Defeats Arch Rival Bendel Insurance To Clinch 8th NPFL Title

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Enugu Rangers have emerged champions of the 2024 Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) season after they defeated arch rivals Bendel Insurance 2-0 for their 8th title as closest rivals Remo Stars and Enyimba both suffered defeats at Sporting FC Lagos and Sunshine Stars.

The win took Rangers to 67 unassailable points at the top after their closest rivals Remo Stars and Enyimba lost 2-1 to Sunshine Stars and Sporting Lagos, respectively.

It is the 8th Nigerian league title for the Flying Antelopes, making them the second most successful club in the league’s history trailing only Enyimba who have 9 league titles in their trophy cabinet.

After being at the top of the league table for many weeks, the Enugu side was faced with the danger of losing the title with anything short of victory against Bendel Insurance with Remo Stars and Enyimba lurking around to take advantage.

However, everything worked in Rangers’ favour on Sunday, as they grabbed the all-important victory and their closest rivals all losing on the day.

It took 32 minutes for Rangers to open the scoring on Sunday, with Kenechukwu Agu slotting in a well placed free-kick to set the filled Nnamdi Azikiwe stadium (Cathedral) agog with celebration.

The Flying Antelopes pushed for a second goal and their efforts paid off in the 65th minute as Chidiebere Nwobodo doubled the lead to relax nerves at the stadium.

Nwobodo’s goal elicited the chants of “holy holy holy Enugu Rangers is another champion” from the fans as their team held on the win the game 2-0 and emerged champions.

With 67 points, Rangers last league game away to Gombe United is for pride as no team will be able to leapfrog them again.

Rangers automatically qualifies to represent Nigeria in the 2024/2025 CAF Champions League. Nigerian second Champions League slot is now left for Remo Stars, Enyimba and Shooting Stars to fight for on the last game day.

Founded in 1970, Rangers had won the league title in 1974, 1975, 1977, 1981, 1982, 1984 and 2016.

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