NPFL team of the first stanza

We have seen the first half of the Nigeria Professional Football League 2021/22 season and it has been nothing but exciting and exhilarating performances.

The NPFL Team of the first stanza

Some individuals have stood out and some teams have also given us so much to talk about after a total of 190 matches.

Although, we have seen some underperformers like Enyimba and Akwa United, while the likes of Remo Stars and Kwara United have been the surprise packages.

At the top, Rivers United and Plateau United passed the 40-point mark, which is a rarity in the NPFL, to lead the rest of the league in a two-horse race.

Standout performers like Bankole Kayode (Remo Stars), Rivers United duo Ishaq Rafiu and Chijioke Akuneto have all distinguished themselves during the course of the season.

Here is a look at the best team from the first stanza of the campaign.

FORMATION: 4-3-3

Bankole Kayode(Remo Stars): A brilliant start for him and his club in the topflight so far. A clean-sheet haul of ten from 16 games is the best by any goalkeeper this season.

His good command of the area, great athleticism, ball playing abilities and reflexes have come in handy for the Ikenne side. He's one of the reasons they sit 4th on the log.

Kazie Enyinnaya (Rivers United)

The right-back has mastered the art of defending and providing support upfront when needed. He might not be a flamboyant one, but he's committed to doing his duties in the right way every match day.

Nduka Junior (Remo Stars)

The Ikenne side's skipper has been a revelation this season. A constant threat from set-pieces and a frequent face in his side's XI. He didn't miss a single game in the first stanza and has two goals in his name.

Ibrahim Buhari (Plateau United)

Buhari has been a star in the league for some seasons and has been a leader at the back for Fidelis Ilechukwu's side this term. He scored an important winner against Katsina United to keep his side within touching distance of Rivers United.

Seun Ogunribide (Remo Stars)

A wonderful campaign for the left-back. He has scored twice and assisted one in over 12 appearances made in his debut top-flight campaign.

Kenechukwu Agu (Rangers)

Arguably, he is the best midfielder so far in the campaign. He's been Enugu Rangers' leader in the middle of the park with his eye-catching performances. A return of four goals and two assists isn't bad at this point.

Afeez Nosiru (Kwara United)

A defensive midfielder who knows his onions. Since last season, he's been a consistent performer and hasn't been away from the top this term. A frequent figure in the Harmony boys' side.

Bello Babatunde (Sunshine Stars)

Another player who has distinguished himself this term. A threat from a set-piece situation this term. He has scored three long range free kicks to keep the Owena Whales in the top half of the log. A mid-season transfer move is inevitable at this point.

Ishaq Rafiu (Rivers United)

A revelation of the season so far. Ishaq has been leading the line for Rivers United adequately this term and his return of 14 goal contributions (goals+assists) is the most by any player.

Chijioke Akuneto (Rivers United)

Akuneto has redefined himself at Rivers United. The former MFM was supposed to join Plateau United, but opted for the Pride of Rivers and is now contributing goals and assists with ease.

Godwin Obaje (Abia Warriors)

The former golden boot winner has been at the right end for Imama Amapakabo's side. He has goal contributions in double digits (11) and is one of the few players to have achieved such a feat this season.

Stanley Eguma (Rivers United)

The veteran and longest-serving manager in the NPFL has been able to conjure a team capable of winning the league title this term. An impressive haul of 42pts in 19 games puts them in vantage position ahead of the deciding half of the season.

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