The Nigeria Football Professional League (NPFL) is the top-tier football league competition in Nigeria. The football league was established in the early 70s, precisely 1972. Over the years, the league competition has had to be re-organized, before currently bearing the present format in use today. Many records have been set and broken over the past seasons in the league. Here are 10 interesting NPFL records you should know about.
1. All-time Highest Goal Scorer
The record for the highest number of goals scored in an NPFL season is currently held by Mfon Udoh. This feat was achieved during the 2014 campaign when the then Enyimba FC striker Udoh scored an impressive 23 goals in 38 games.
2. Most Titles Won
Enyimba FC currently holds the record for most league titles won. The Aba-based club has won the League 8 times. This feat is more impressive considering that they only won their first title in 2001.
3. Most Consecutive League Titles
Heartland FC holds the record for most consecutive league trophies, winning 4 titles in a row. Heartland achieved this feat in the late 80s, when the then Iwuanyanwu Nationale (as they were formerly known) won the league title in 1987, 1988, 1989, and 1990.
4. First League Champions
The first winners of the Nigerian League were the Mighty Jets of Jos. They won the maiden edition of the League in 1972.
5. Best League in Africa
In 2012 the NPFL was named the best League in Africa and 24th in the world by the International Football Federation of History and Statistics (IFFHS).
6. League Cancellation
The League has been cancelled on two occasions. First was in 2018 due to internal crisis within the Nigerian football federation and 2020 due to the disruptions caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
7. Youngest Player to Finish Highest Goalscorer
The youngest player to finish as the highest goal scorer in a league season is current Super Eagles player and captain Ahmed Musa. Musa, then 18-years-old finished the 2010 league season as the highest goal scorer. He scored 18 times for Kano Pillars.
8. Continental Champions
Only one NPFL club has won the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Champions League. The People’s Elephant Enyimba won it on two occasions 2003, and 2004.
9. Longest Unbeaten Home Record
According to the Guinness Book of Records Kano Pillars had the longest unbeaten streak in the Nigerian League. Pillars was reported to have played an incredible 202 games in their home Sani Abacha Stadium without a single loss. The record was finally broken in 2015 when Pillars lost 1-2 at home to Nasarawa United.
10. Privately owned Clubs who have won the League.
Only 5 non-government affiliated sides have won the title in the history of the Nigerian League. These include Mighty Jets (1972), Racca Rovers (1978), Leventis United (1986), Stationary Stores (1992), and Udoji United (1996).
The 2021 NPFL season is currently going on.