NPFL Clubs Vote To End 2019/2020 Season Due To COVID-19 pandemic

A majority of clubs chairman have voted to end the 2019-20 Nigeria professional Football League (NPFL) season which has been disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic, with the final standings to be decided on a points per Game(PPG) basis.

According to a statement by the club owners Association of Nigeria which was signed by the Executive assistant to the chairman, Alloy Chukwuemeka, it was decided that the top three club will represent the country in the CAF Inter club competitions for the 2020-21 season.

No mention was made about declaring Plateau united who lead the standings NPFL champions but the statement made clear that no teams will be relegated or promoted to the top flight next season.

According to the statement,17 clubs voted in favour of curtailing the league while Akwa united and Lobi Stars abstained and Enugu Rangers elected to continue with plans to stage a 'Super Six" tournament to decide the title and continental places.

Plateau united (49 points),Rivers united (45 points) and Lobi Stars (43 points) made up the top three before play was suspended with most teams having 13 games to play.

Using the PPG metric,however, Enyimba who are currently fifth with 36 points from 20 games will move up to second on the log.

The top three becomes Plateau united (1.90 points),Enyimba (1.80 points) and Rivers United (1.80 points) in this scenario.

By this measure, Plateau united and Enyimba will qualify for the CAF Champions league while Rivers United will complete in the CAF Confederation Cup.

Nigeria's other representative in the CAF Confederation Cup is likely to be Niger Tornadoes who participated in the competition last season after finishing runners up to Kano pillars (who had already qualified for the Champions league) in the Aiteo Cup.

The vote which was held on Sunday comes amid uncertainty about how to conclude the current campaign which has been abeyance since March 18 due to COVID-19 pandemic.

Nigeria joins Rwanda, Ghana, Mauritius and Kenya as some of other African countries to have called off their leagues because of the coronavirus pandemic.

In any event,the decision brings clarity to what has become an interminable problem for the LMC and clubs can now focus on planning for next season although no date has been proposed for the kickoff of the 2020-21 season .

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