Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) defending champions, Rivers United, started their title defence on a winning note as they laboured to a 2-1 win over 10-man Lobi Stars in the 2023 abridged league Week One match played yesterday at the Adokiye Amasiemaka stadium in Port-Harcourt.
Elsewhere, last season’s runners-up, Plateau United, escaped home defeat by the whiskers as they fought back to draw 3-3 with 3SC of Ibadan.
However, Rangers weren’t lucky as they went down 0-2 to neighbours, Abia Warriors in Awka, just as Wikki Tourists also lost 0-2 to Niger Tornadoes in Bauchi.
In another Group A match, returnees El-Kanemi Warriors were beaten 2-0 by Remo Stars in Ikenne while Gombe United forced Kwara United to a 0-0 draw at the Lekan Sa;ami stadium in Ibadan.
At the Pantami stadium, new boys Doma United started life in the topflight on a shaky note as they were forced to a 1-1 draw by Sunshine Stars.