Lobi Stars
Lobi’s line-up before an NPFL game (photo credit: LMC Media)

The League Management Company has declared the 2017/2018 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) concluded with fourteen matches remaining to be played.

As a result, table-toppers Lobi Stars will represent Nigeria in next season’s Caf Champions League. Lobi have 43 points from the 24 games played before the league went on break.

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In a statement released on Friday, the LMC said that the decision was made after a meeting with the association of Club owners on Thursday night.

Thursday’s meeting was geared towards finding a way to conclude the league and cup season in Nigeria, in time to meet the October 15 deadline of the Confederation of African Football (Caf) for countries to complete registration for the 2018/19 continental competitions.

The NPFL went on break shortly before the 2018 Fifa World Cup with a resumption anticipated from July 18.

However, a fresh crisis hit the Nigerian football body shortly after the country’s elimination from from the World Cup, with a court judgment at the centre of a protracted crisis which left the football leagues in the balance for over a month.

The LMC statement also said that since the league will be terminating with fourteen matches to play, it was reportedly agreed that none of the twenty teams will be relegated but four more teams will be promoted from the second tier after the conclusion of their own season.

It also said that the twenty-four teams will then play in an abridged league format next season, with the commencement fixed for November, 2018.

The 2018/2019 Season will be played on 22 Match days, ending with a Play off to determine the winner by May 2019, according to the LMC.