The second round of the Nigeria Women Premier League commences on Wednesday June 21 with seven mouth-watering matches which includes a clash of the titans set to take centre stage at the Nembe City Township Stadium in Bayelsa State.
It is a top of the table encounter in Group A that will see third-placed Bayelsa Queens trade tackles with leaders Rivers Angels, and players of both sides have been speaking to naijafootballplus ahead of the match.
In the reverse fixture decided at the Yakubu Gowon Stadium on a rain-soaked Wednesday over a month ago, visiting Bayelsa Queens could only manage a consolation goal in their 2-1 defeat to Rivers Angels. However, the intent of the Restoration girls was duly noted as they succeeded in defiling the Jewel of Rivers’ home record – Coach Edwin Okon’s side were yet to concede a goal at home prior to that time.
“We played Rivers Angels in their home and we did very well,” Bayelsa Queens Midfielder, Tessy Biawho told naijafootballplus. “I believe it was the rain that made us lose that match. We played very well.
“Now they are coming to our home I believe we will do better than what we did in that match.”
Osarenoma Igbinovia, who is looking to taste plenty of action in the second round after fully recovering from an injury that kept her out for most part of the first stanza, echoed her teammate’s thoughts when she said, “that match will not be an easy match but we will definitely scale through”.
Igbinovia added: “Our expectation is just to win the game and play well also to redeem our image.”
“We are going to approach the game with all seriousness. Fine, our former teammates are there but that is in the past. They are not our teammates anymore they are Rivers Angels’ players and we are Bayelsa Queens.”
In pre-season, Bayelsa Queens saw two of their best legs in Rafiat Sule and Patience Kalu move to defending champions Rivers Angels, but they seem to have gotten adequate replacements in Tessy Biawho and Aminat Yakubu.
Last season’s highest goal scorer, Sule has not found the back of the net at her new club but she has the opportunity of opening her account against her former club.
“Actually Bayelsa Queens is my former team quite alright but I still love them as a team. So if I score fine, if I don’t score I will still take it like that. I will still thank God.
“Going to Bayelsa Queens of course we can beat them if the officiating is fair. At worse we can pick a draw,” Sule added.
Rivers Angels are the only team still unbeaten in the 2016/17 NWPL campaign and they would be hoping to return from Nembe City unscathed.
With 12 points the Jewel of Rivers sit atop Group A, while their Matchday 8 hosts are third with 10 points. Meanwhile a victory for Bayelsa Queens could see them climb to the top.