Top Nigerian Football Teams to Bet On

With Nigeria’s national passion for football and a huge betting industry, wagering on Nigerian club teams is a popular endeavor for fans and bettors. Nigeria’s top division, the Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL), features 20 clubs competing for the title. In this article, we’ll highlight five of the best Nigerian teams and provide key statistics to inform your betting.

Enyimba International

Based in Aba, Enyimba International are one of the most successful Nigerian clubs ever. They have won the NPFL title 8 times and boast 2 CAF Champions League titles in 2003 and 2004, making them the only Nigerian club to win the prestigious African crown.

Key Stats:

  • NPFL titles – 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2015, 2018/19
  • Best NPFL finish last 5 years – 1st (2018/19)
  • Average possession – 52%
  • Shot conversion rate – 12%
  • Key player – Victor Mbaoma (forward) – 16 goals last season

With their squad depth, championship pedigree and tactical style favoring possession football, Enyimba should be on any bettor’s shortlist when wagering on the NPFL.

Kano Pillars

Based in Kano, Pillars are 3-time Nigerian champions and perennial contenders with strong fan support. They finished 4th last season.

Key Stats:

  • NPFL titles – 2008, 2011, 2012
  • Best NPFL finish last 5 years – 1st (2014)
  • Average possession – 49%
  • Shot conversion rate – 10%
  • Key player – Nyima Nwagua (forward) – 13 goals last season

Pillars’ attacking approach and talented forwards like Nwagua make them dangerous. But shaky defending has been their Achilles heel lately.

Rivers United

Port Harcourt club Rivers United won their only NPFL title in 2016 and continually place in the top four. Last season they finished 2nd.

Key Stats:

  • NPFL titles – 2016
  • Best NPFL finish last 5 years – 1st (2016)
  • Average possession – 51%
  • Shot conversion rate – 16%
  • Key player – Godwin Aguda (forward) – 18 goals last season

Rivers boast the league’s top scorer last season in Aguda and great conversion of chances into goals. Consider them for a top three finish.

Sunshine Stars

The Akure-based club are 4-time Nigerian champions during the 2000s but have struggled lately, finishing 13th last season.

Key Stats:

  • NPFL titles – 2003, 2005, 2007/08, 2009/10
  • Best NPFL finish last 5 years – 5th (2015)
  • Average possession – 44%
  • Shot conversion rate – 9%
  • Key player – Fuad Ekelojuoti (midfielder) – 8 goals last season

Sunshine’s pedigree means they cannot be underestimated despite recent troubles. Signings in the offseason improve an aging squad.

Plateau United

Plateau secured their sole NPFL championship in 2017 and have placed top four in recent seasons. They finished 3rd last term.

Key Stats:

  • NPFL titles – 2017
  • Best NPFL finish last 5 years – 1st (2017)
  • Average possession – 47%
  • Shot conversion rate – 13%
  • Key player – Jesse Akila (defender) – 4 goals last season

Plateau are defensively solid with the third best goals conceded record. Relying on their backline and counterattacking style can see them win matches against the odds.

Betting Tips

  • Look to back Enyimba and Rivers United for top three finishes
  • Kano Pillars offer value with likelihood of topping their poor 2019 form
  • Sunshine and Plateau can spring surprises on any given matchday despite being underdogs
  • Use shot conversion and goals conceded numbers to estimate match goals and results
  • Watch for injury news on key players like Aguda and Mbaoma

The statistics on possession, conversion of chances and goals conceded for each team provides valuable insights for betting successfully on Nigerian football. Combine these numbers with recent form and motivation for each match to make smart wagers.

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