Abridged league is difficult, breeds match fixing  –  Maikaba

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Plateau United coach,  Abdu Maikaba has disclosed that abridged league format adopted by the League Management Company, LMC for the 2018/19 NOFL season will be very difficult adding that one of the greatest disadvantages of abridged league is that it encourages match fixing.

Maikaba told National Daily that abridged league does not produce a worthy champion for the league.

“It is a difficult format because if you make mistakes, it will be very difficult to recover due to no time. But we will try our best to make sure we had a good take off. It will help us in the beginning of the league to be on top of the log and we can be able to finish in the top position. It will qualify us from the group to contest for the champions.

“The disadvantage is that if you make mistakes, you will not recover because there is no time. Secondly, it is better to be a champion when you meet all the teams, you will rank better as a champion. In abridged format, you can come from an easy group and become the champion; you might not be the best. Not like when you play 38 matches.

“For instance, we picked Lobi Stars to represent us because they have been leading the twenty-team league table and the choice was justified because they are making us proud in the continent. That shows that the choice was good.

“In the years passed, we played abridged league and there were so many issues after the league in deciding the winner and the teams that will go on relegation. Abridged league format gives room for match fixing. I remember there was a league where Insurance and Kano Pillars were winning. Insurance needed seven goals to be on top of Kano Pillars and at the end of the match, they won by 7-0. We will not forget that. Abridged league gives room for that,” he concluded.

The 2018/19 NPFL season will kickoff on Sunday,  January 13 with 24 teams divided into two groups or “A” and “B” with the bottom four teams in each group going on relegation  at the end of the season.

The groupings are:

GROUP A

Wikki Tourists, Bender Insurance, Rivers United Remo Stars, Rangers Int’l, Niger Tornadoes, Lobi Stars, Katsina United,
Kwara United, Sunshine Stars, Enyimba FC and MFM FC

GROUP B

Yobe Desert Stars, Gombe United,
Go Round, Kada City,
Nasarawa United, Abia Warriors, Plateau United FC Ifeanyiubah, Kano Pillars, Heartland,
Akwa United and El-Kanemi Warriors

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