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Written by Oluwaseun Oyediji

After near misses with clubs like MFM FC and Plateau United, coach Fidelis Ilechukwu finally laid his hands on the Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) title with Rangers International.

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The team sealed the title last weekend with a game to spare and finally got their rewards with the league title in Jos on Sunday.

Kazeen Ogunleye and Godwin Obaje scored for the Flying Antelopes while Anas Hassan converted for Gombe United in a 2-1 win for the Nigeria league winners which rounded up the season on a winning note.

The league title ended Ilechukwu’s long wait to have a glimpse at the league title.

The gaffer led defunct MFM FC to promotion from the second-tier Nigeria National League (NNL) and almost claimed the league title in the team’s second season in the top flight.

It was a four points deficit over Plateau United which won the 2017 league title above MFM FC.

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The coach moved to Heartland FC with some unpalatable experiences before departing to join Jos-based side, Plateau United.

With Plateau United, he almost won the title and also finished second at the end of the 2021/2022 season with a whooping ten-point deficit below winners Rivers United.

Taking over as the coach of Enugu Rangers, the title finally got to him with a 70 points mark to end the season.

The team will represent Nigeria alongside Remo Stars in the CAF Champions League next season.

Meanwhile…

Four teams dropped to the second-tier NNL at the end of the 2023/2024 NPFL season.

Ahead of the final Matchday, Gombe United and Heartland FC already dropped to the NNL.

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Doma United joined them after a 1-1 draw with Abia Warriors at the Pantami Stadium, Gombe state.

The drop ended their two-season stint in the top flight.

Sporting Lagos also dropped to the NNL after a 1-0 loss to Shooting Stars Sports Club in Ibadan.

The Lagos-based side's maiden season in the top flight didn't go as planned as they staged an instant return to the second tier.

The relegated teams will be replaced by Beyond Limits Football Academy, Nasarawa United, Ikorodu City FC, and El-Kanemi Warriors in the NPFL come next season.

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