Robert Mizo was one of the three contenders for the golden boot in the abridged 2022/23 season of the Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL), running neck and neck with Imade Osarenkhoe of Bendel Insurance and eventual winner, Chukwuemeka Obioma of Enyimba.

Mizo was a surprise in the race as his Bayelsa United side struggled to stay in the top league especially after they were docked three points and three goals for fans incident early in the season.

Obioma would finish with 16 goals including those scored in the championship playoff which Mizo’s team didn’t participate in. Mizo had nine to beat Osarenkhoe to the second top scorer position.

It thus was no surprise this time when on MatchDay 1, he shot off the block with a blistering hat-trick in a tricky tie against former champions, Akwa United in an eight-goal thriller.

It was a confidence boosting performance to the start of the season and for Mizo, it was an opportunity to talk up his club, declaring their Samson Siasia Stadium ground as a no-go area for visiting teams to pick a point.

Bayelsa United had come back thrice to beat Akwa United 5-3 in the season’s opener and it was Mizo who stole the show as he netted three of the five goals scored by the home team.

In the aftermath of his command performance in the game, Mizo warned that Bayelsa United can achieve success in the just started season by picking points from away games through either a win or draw and winning all their home matches.

Post-match in Yenagoa, the player declared: “This is our ground and I don’t think any team can come here and defeat us.

“We can go away and get a win or draw and come back home to defeat whoever comes here.”

Bayelsa United would be away to Doma United in Gombe and it will be the first test for Mizo’s boast of a sparkling display on the road results.

David NPFL
October 1, 2023
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