With one point from the opening three games of the new campaign and staying bottom of the table, Akwa United are in desperate need of their first win of the Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) season and they will be giving their A-game on Sunday when they engage visiting 3SC on Matchday 4 at the Eket Stadium.
The organizers of the NPFL recently granted Akwa United’s request to play their home matches of this season at the 18,000 sitting capacity Eket Stadium, until such a time when the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, also known as the Nest of Champions, will be less busy with international matches.
The Promise Keepers have good memories of the Eket Stadium having had their pre-season camping there where they recorded victories in all their preparatory games. Last season, Akwa United played one league match at the stadium where they defeated Plateau United by a lone goal scored by James Ajako.
They have also enjoyed good fortunes at the stadium in some friendlies having defeated Katsina United 2-1, Rangers 2-0 and Vandrezzer FC 4-1.
Having lost 5-3 to Bayelsa United in Yenagoa, drew goalless with Sporting Lagos in Uyo before losing 3-2 to Enyimba in Aba last time out, Akwa United head coach Fatai Osho knows that victory this weekend would go a long way to turning the mood around, and get the season moving in an upward direction.
The 2021 champions have been prolific in front of goal especially away from home having scored five goals in two away games but are yet to score at home this season following a goalless draw with Sporting Lagos in their only home game on Matchday 2. With five goals scored and eight conceded, the Promise Keepers have a goal deficit of -3.
The club’s technical director, Edwin Okon, collaborates Osho’s belief that the team will be at their best on Sunday against 3SC who are fifth on the log with six points having won two of their opening three games of the season recording 2-1 victories over Plateau United and Gombe United respectively, losing 2-0 to Bendel Insurance in Benin City, scoring four and conceded four in the process.
Last season, Akwa United won 2-0 in Uyo and were held to a 2-2 draw in Ibadan. They have the upperhand in the head-to-head record having enjoyed seven victories to 3SC’s five wins while two of those encounters ended in draws in the last 14 meetings between the two teams.
The visitors are without a win and have never picked a point in their last seven visits and the Promise Keepers will be encouraged to continue their dominance over their visitors from the West.
Four players; Hadi Mohammed, Seyi Oguntayo, Kufre Ebong and David Philip have scored the club’s five goals so far and Akwa United fans will be expecting their boys to fire on all cylinders on Sunday as they hope to move out from the danger zone on the log.
The match is scheduled to be live on NPFL-Live app from 4pm Nigerian time.