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Maikaba, Mangut Lauds Pillars Vociferous Fans; In the Wake of NPFL Sanctions Against Pillars & Gombe

January, 9 2024.

...Rivers Utd Takes On Plateau Utd Today

The Technical Adviser of Kano Pillars, Abdul Maikaba has attributed his team’s match-day 17 victory over Plateau United, their first in the new year, to hard work by the players, and the massive effect of the support the team always get, from their home fans who cheered the team all through the match.

Pillars fell behind to Albert Hillary's goal, at the stroke of half time, but earned the 2-1 victory with a second half fight-back; to record back-to-back wins at their fortress, the Sani Abacha Stadium, in KofarMata.

With the victory, Pillars are now up to 5th on the NPFL log, and Maikaba said that's good motivation for the fans, to look forward to their next clash, away to Lobi Stars in Lafia, with some optimism.

Kano Pillars will clash with Lobi Stars who are 2nd, only on inferior goal difference to Remo Stars, knowing that the Makurdi-based side are in good form, having thrashed Kwara United 2-0, in their week 17 fixture, played in Ilorin, on Sunday.

Despite the loss in Kano, Head Coach of Plateau United, Ayuba Mangut has vowed to continue putting up tough fights, in their upcoming games, with a view to ensuring that the Jos-based side is among the top finishers in the NPFL this season.

He said their 1-2 reverse to Kano Pillars will not in any way deter them from their aspiration of punching a ticket to play on the continent, next season.

Mangut, a former assistant to Maikaba while at Plateau United, noted that the atmosphere at the Sani Abacha Stadium was always an added advantage to the home team, but was quick to add that his players were prepared for such.

Plateau United will next take on Rivers United in a rescheduled match Day 10 fixture, at the New Jos Stadium, in Zaria Road, today. The fixture was initially scheduled for December 25, 2023.

An improbable victory for Stanley Eguma's men, who have also got four other outstanding games, will take their points tally to 20, and see them climb from 17th in the table, to 12th. And for Plateau United, for whom Albert Hillary has been in fine scoring form lately, a win will guarantee them a lift above Pillars, into 5th position, with 28 points.

Similarly, the Katsina United versus Enyimba Int'l FC of Aba rescheduled tie, will now take place on January 17, 2024, that's next Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the management of the Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) have charged Kano Pillars FC, for breaching its 2023/24 Rules & Framework, in the course of their Matchday 17 game at the Sani Abacha Stadium, in Kofarmata, against Plateau United of Jos, on Sunday.

In specific terms, Kano Pillars were charged by the league body, for the misconduct of their fans, which precipitated a delay in the live transmission of the game, which the home side, came from a goal down in the first half, to win 2-1.

According to the NPFL, they acted on the report of the match commissioner for the game, who detailed how the irate fans of Pillars threw stones, and other objects onto the pitch, while protesting against the decision of one of tje match officials.

The League Body further noted with a frown, that the club’s supporters acted in a manner capable of bringing the game to disrepute, after failing to show the spirit of sportsmanship in the game against Plateau United; hence the disruption of the live broadcast of the game, by its partners, StarTimes.

As a consequence, the Sai-Masugida will now have to cough out N10 million, as penalty for the breach, that's delaying the smooth transmission of a live broadcast.

Pillars will also pay N1 million for repeated offence of throwing objects onto the pitch as well as another N1 million for general misconduct, capable of bringing the game to disrepute.

The club will also pay N250,000 being compensation, to Assistant Referee Sodiq Adejumo for the injuries, he sustained during the uproar.

Aside of all these, Kano Pillars will play their next home match(es) at the Sani Abacha Stadium, before the mid-season break without fans.

Kano Pillars were given 48 hours from (Monday), the day of notice of sanctions to appeal the sanctions.

But rather than appeal the hefty sanctions, the management of Kano Pillars has while condemning the action of its unruly supporters, regretted the embarrassment their actions may have caused. The club also wrote to the league body, asking them to "temper justice with mercy".

In a related development, Gombe United FC have been charged and deducted 3 points, for breaching NPFL Rules & Framework for the ongoing season, having received reports of the club's failure to provide effective security for their Match-day 17 encounter against Rivers United, at the Pantami Stadium, on Sunday.

According to the League Body, Gombe United’s failure to ensure adequate security led to the disruption of the game, which ended 1-1 with Andy Okpe giving the Pride of Rivers the lead on the stroke of 45 minutes, before Wasiu Alalade drew the hosts level, 3 minutes into first half added time.

Supporters of Gombe United, aka the Jewels of the Savannah were reported to have thrown objects onto the pitch, and some went as far as physically assaulting two match officials, after the game.

The NPFL specifically frowned at Head Coach of Gombe United, Mohammed Baba-Ganaru for his role in inciting the crowd to harass and assault the match officials; while other officials of the club and their supporters were rebuked for failing to display sportsmanship, and acting in manner capable of bringing the game to disrepute.

As a consequence, Gombe United will pay a penalty of N1 million for the repeated offence of failing to provide adequate security, and another N1 million for repeated offence of throwing batteries, onto the field of play.

Coach Mohammed Baba-Ganaru was also suspended by the NPFL, from the technical bench of the club for the next 3 matches.

The club who are currently 13th in the NPFL table, with 20 points, will also cough out half a million Naira (N500,000) in lieu of injuries and losses suffered by the Referee Sa’id Abdul’Aziz, and one of his Assistants, Cletus Adewebi. reports that Gombe United who also has 48 hours from (Monday) to appeal the sanctions, were also asked to play their next home match(es), at the Pantami Stadium, before the mid-season break, without fans.

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