Nigeria Professional Football League

The Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) is the highest level of the Nigerian football league system, for the Nigerian club-football championships. The Nigerian league has suffered, like many others, from the financial impact and dwindling fortunes since the late 2000s. [1][2] It is fed into by the Nigeria National League (NNL). It is organised by the League Management Company (LMC).

Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL)
Nigerian Professional Football League Logo.svg
Founded1972; 50 years ago (1972)
CountryNigeria
ConfederationCAF
Number of teams20
Level on pyramid1
Relegation toNigeria National League
Domestic cup(s)Nigerian FA Cup
Nigerian Super Cup
Super 4 (Nigeria)
International cup(s)Champions League
Confederation Cup
Current championsRivers United(2021–22) (1st title)
Most championshipsEnyimba F.C. (8 titles)
TV partnersNTA Sports, NPFL TV
Websitenpfl.ng
Current: 2021–22 Nigeria Professional Football League

NameEdit

It was formerly known as the Nigerian Premier League for the second time, as of the 2012/2013 Season from the 2003/2004 Season; "Nigerian Premiership" (2000–2003); "Nigerian Premier League", first time (1993–2000); "Nigerian Professional League" (1990–1993); Nigerian National League - First Division (1979–1990) and "the (Nigerian) National League" or "Nigerian Football League" (1972–1979), [3]

International partnershipsEdit

On 27 April 2016, The Liga Nacional de Fútbol Profesional organisers of the La Liga sealed a five-year memorandum of understanding deal with the NPFL on capacity building and idea exchange signed by the League Management Company chairman, Shehu Dikko and the La Liga President Javier Tebas. The NPFL and La Liga partnership has already started bearing fruit as during the January transfer window, Super Eagles fringe player Ezekiel Bassey was signed on loan from Enyimba to Barcelona B on a six-month deal with an option of 3-years come end of the season based on performance. The NPFL AllStars (made up of the league's best players) have also been playing Pre-Season as well as Winter break friendlies with top flight Spanish sides like Atlético Madrid, Málaga, Valencia, Villareal etc. In an effort to expose and test Local players against top players and sides.

In Thursday, 25 May 2017, The Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) alongside the League Management Company (LMC), also consummated a multi-faceted strategic agreement in general football development with the Football Federation and Premier League body of the Kingdom of Morocco, NFF President Amaju Pinnick and NFF 2nd Vice-President/ LMC Chairman Shehu Dikko put pen to paper on a memorandum of understanding with their Moroccan counterparts, the result of detailed discussions, deliberations and considerations over time. The two FA Presidents signed their own sides in the Office of the Federation Royale Marocaine de Football in Rabat, while the LMC 's Chairman, Shehu Dikko and Chairman of the Ligue Nationale de Football Professionnel (which organises the Botola), Said Naciri signed at the LNFP office, watched by the two FA bosses.[4]

Eunisell, BET9JA and Hero lager are current sponsors of the NPFL.[5]

HistoryEdit

2017 seasonEdit

Plateau United F.C. won the league on 9 September 2017, with a 2–0 victory over Enugu Rangers.[6]

2018 seasonEdit

In July 2018 the league was postponed indefinitely following crisis in the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF).[7][8] Lobi Stars was declared as the sole representative of the league in the 2019 CAF Champions League as the team was at the top of the standings.[9]

2019 seasonEdit

The league consisted of 24 teams. Four were promoted from the Nigeria National League. Twenty teams remained from the previous season which was not completed. They were divided into two groups of 12 teams. The top three teams in each group contested for the title in the NPFL Super six championship playoff in Lagos. The People's Elephant finished at the top of the log with 12 points from five games.


Enyimba vs Kano Pillars is considered the biggest match of the season because of their rivalry and they remain the 2 teams yet to finish outside the top eight for 12 seasons.

ManagementEdit

The League Management Company (shortly and commonly known as the 'LMC') is the legal association football League governing body of the Nigeria Professional Football League. It was created and incorporated by the Nigeria Football Federation in 2012 to take over the nearly-collapsed Nigeria Football League (NFL), the former league governing body.[10]

HistoryEdit

The NFF created the Nigeria Premier League, organized by the Nigeria Football League in 1990 as a step in attaining full professionalism as the sole regulatory for football in Nigeria. At the Onikan Stadium on 12 May 1990, the league was given a name as it was then known as the 'Professional League'.[11]

However in November 2012 with the agreement and support of the National Sports Commission, Nigeria's sports regulatory authority, the NFF constituted an Interim Management Committee (IMC) for the League as part of measures to avert a total collapse of the top tier professional League following the downfall of the Nigeria Football League (NFL) which arose from difficult legal and administrative impediments.[12] The IMC supervised the formation and incorporation of the LMC to run a transparent and commercially viable professional league.

AchievementsEdit

The first step the LMC took was to rebrand the League name, from the Nigerian Premier League to the Nigerian Professional Football League, (NPFL) or simply the Professional 'Football' League)[13][14] Also, the LMC signed a $34m TV rights deal to broadcast league matches which lasted until 2017[15][16]

In 2015, the League Management Company solicited financial support from the Government in order to upgrade existing grounds, provision of required broadcast and medical equipment and facilities in the stadiums.[17]

The League Management Company has its framework and rules governing the 20 clubs in the Nigeria Professional Football League each season.[18] On 5 July 2016, the NPFL adopted the TMS Domestic Transfer Matching System (DTMS), becoming the first league in Africa to do so.[19]

The League Management Company is currently headed by Shehu Dikko.[20]

AwardsEdit

In 2012, the NPFL was ranked as the best in Africa and 24th best in the world by the IFFHS, the rating puts it a spot above the Scottish Premier League for the year.[21][22]

Qualification for African competitionsEdit

Association ranking for 2020–21 CAF competitionsEdit

Association ranking for 2020–21 CAF Champions League and 2020–21 CAF Confederation Cup will be based on results from each CAF tournament (Champions League and Confederation Cup) from 2016 to 2019–20.

Legend
  • CL: CAF Champions League
  • CC: CAF Confederation Cup
  •   Associations ranked 1–12 and eligible to enter two teams in each CAF tournament (Champions League and Confederation Cup)
Rank Association 2016
(× 1)
2017
(× 2)
2018
(× 3)
2018–19
(× 4)
2019–20
(× 5)
Total
2020 2019 Mvt CL CC CL CC CL CC CL CC CL CC
1 2   +1   Morocco 4 4 6 3 5 7 5 7 8 8 190
2 3   +1   Egypt 7 0 7 0.5 5 3 4 5 11 6 167
3 1   –2   Tunisia 0 3 7 5 9 0 8 6 6 0 140
4 5   +1   DR Congo 0 5 1 5 3 4 5 0 4 1 83
5 4   –1   Algeria 0 4 4 2 5 2 5 1 3 1 81
6 6     South Africa 6 0 3 4.5 2 0 6 0 3 0.5 68.5
7 7     Zambia 4 0 2 2 2 0 0 2.5 1 2 43
8 9   +1   Nigeria 2 0 0 0.5 0 3 2 1 0 3 39
9 10   +1   Guinea 0 0 0 1 3 0 3 0 0 3 38
10 11   +1   Angola 0 0 0 1 4 0 0 0.5 4 0 36

Past championsEdit

Champions by seasonEdit

Most titles wonEdit

Clubs Championship Years
Enyimba (Aba) 8 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2010, 2015, 2019
Rangers International (Enugu) 7 1974, 1975, 1977, 1981, 1982, 1984, 2016
Shooting Stars (Ibadan) 5 1976, 1980, 1983, 1995, 1998
Heartland F.C. (Owerri) 5 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1993
Kano Pillars (Kano) 4 2008, 2012, 2013, 2014
Dolphin (Port Harcourt) (Includes Eagle Cement) 3 1997, 2004, 2011
Bendel Insurance (Benin City) 2 1973, 1979
Julius Berger (Lagos) 2 1991, 2000
Lobi Stars (Makurdi) 1 1999
BCC Lions (Gboko) 1 1994
Stationery Stores (Lagos) 1 1992
Leventis United (Ibadan) 1 1986
Plateau United (Jos) 1 2017
Bayelsa United (Yenegoa) 1 2009
Ocean Boys (Brass) 1 2006
Udoji United (Awka) 1 1996
New Nigeria Bank (Benin City) 1 1985
Racca Rovers (Kano) 1 1978
Mighty Jets (Jos) 1 1972
Akwa United (Uyo) 1 2021

Top scorersEdit

Year Top scorers Club Goals
1990 [23]   Ishaya Jatau Iwuanyanwu Nationale 17
1991   Richard Ojomo Bendel United 12
1992   Arthur Moses Super Stores 10
1993   Tony Nwigwe Iwuanyanwu Nationale 13
1994   Olumide Harris Shooting Stars 14
1995   Ben Agawam Gombe United 12
1996   Peter Anyiolobi Enyimba 9
1997   Paul Kpoughoul Jasper United/BCC Lions 16
1998   Hassan Minna Gombe United 14
1999   Emmanuel Ago Iwuanyanwu Nationale 14
2000   Peter Ijeh Julius Berger 14
2001   Uche Okereke Enugu Rangers 13
2002   Joetex Frimpong El-Kanemi Warriors 16
2003   Chibuzor Ozurumba

  Endurance Idahor
Iwuanyanwu Nationale

Julius Berger
13
2004   Kabiru Alausa Julius Berger 13
2005   Timothy Anjembe

 Joseph Akpala
Lobi Stars

Bendel Insurance
12
2006   Ikechukwu Ibenegbu El-Kanemi Warriors 10
2007   Aruwa Ameh Kaduna United 10
2008   Abubakar Babale Wikki Tourists/Sunshine Stars 14
2009   Orok Akarandut Akwa United 17
2010   Ahmed Musa Kano Pillars 18
2011   Jude Aneke Kaduna United 20
2012 [24]   Sibi Gwar Niger Tornadoes 17
2013 [24]   Victor Namo Nasarawa United 18
2014 [24]   Mfon Udoh Enyimba 23
2015 [25]   Gbolahan Salami Warri Wolves 17
2016 [24]   Godwin Obaje Wikki Tourists 18
2017   Anthony Okpotu Lobi Stars 19
2018[5]   Junior Lokosa Kano Pillars 19
2019   Mfon Udoh

  Sunusi Ibrahim
Akwa united

. Nasarawa united
10
2019–20   Israel Abia [note 1] Enugu Rangers 12
2020–21   Silas Nwankwo

  Charles Atshimene
Nasarawa United

Akwa United
19
  1. ^ Leading goalscorer as at the time of cancellation.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Walker, Andrew (28 July 2008). "Africa | Is Premier League killing Nigerian football?". BBC News. Retrieved 7 December 2013.
  2. ^ Category: Weekend. "Guardian News Website – Dwindling fortunes of Nigeria's premier league". Ngrguardiannews.com. Archived from the original on 13 December 2013. Retrieved 7 December 2013.
  3. ^ "Nigeria Champions". Rsssf.com. Retrieved 31 May 2018.
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 30 May 2017. Retrieved 28 May 2017.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  5. ^ a b "Lokosa Gets Eunisell's N3.8m, Trophy as NPFL Top Scorer". ThisDay. Retrieved 22 January 2019.
  6. ^ "Plateau United wins Nigerian Professional Football League". Vanguardngr.com.
  7. ^ "Nigerian league postponed indefinitely". Bbc.co.uk. 17 July 2018.
  8. ^ "LMC announces indefinite postponement of NPFL resumption". Nigeria Professional Football League. 16 July 2018. Retrieved 19 July 2018.
  9. ^ Harry, Iwuala (1 September 2018). "LMC Document on season conclusion". npfl.ng. League Management Company. Retrieved 15 May 2020.
  10. ^ "NFF gives Nigeria Premier League green light on its AGM". Goal.com. 29 November 2012. Retrieved 10 August 2020.
  11. ^ Segun, Solomon (26 April 2014). "History of the Nigerian Premier League". yeswefoot.com. Retrieved 10 August 2020.
  12. ^ "Kudos to the League Management Company". Vanguardngr.com. 7 October 2016.
  13. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 6 June 2017. Retrieved 10 August 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 31 May 2017. Retrieved 10 August 2020.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  15. ^ "Nigeria Football League gets 34 million dollars TV rights deal". venturesafrica.com. 20 August 2013. Retrieved 10 August 2020.
  16. ^ "Supersports pulls out of partnership with NPFL". Nationaldailyng.com. 24 April 2017.
  17. ^ Ahmadu, Samuel (22 August 2015). "Shehu Dikko appeals to governors for stadia facilities upgrade". Goal. Retrieved 1 June 2019.
  18. ^ "About the LMC". npfl.ng. Retrieved 10 August 2020.
  19. ^ "Nigeria Football Federation adopts FIFA TMS domestic transfer matching system". FIFA.com. 5 July 2016. Retrieved 10 August 2020.
  20. ^ "Shehu Dikko is the new League Management Company boss". Goal.com. Retrieved 10 August 2020.
  21. ^ "Kenyan League ranked Worst in Africa". Nairobi Wire. Retrieved 20 March 2014.
  22. ^ "KPL becomes last in IFFHS World rankings". Retrieved 20 March 2014.
  23. ^ "The Nigerian league's top scorers' jinx – SuperSport – Football". SuperSport. Retrieved 7 December 2013.
  24. ^ a b c d "ODEY'S TARGET: Top Scorers In Last Five NPFL Seasons". Complete Sports.
  25. ^ "Gbolahan Salami finishes as NPFL's top scorer". DailyPost Nigeria. Retrieved 30 January 2018.

External linksEdit