Posted by: westafricanfootball | 07/08/2012


Bayelsa United FC, based in Yenagoa in southern Nigeria, is one of the four teams that won promotion from the Nigeria National League 2012, winning “Division D”. Bayelsa United FC won the Nigeria Premier League in 2008-2009 but was sensationally relegated the following season.

According to the official homepage of the Nigeria National League, the club scored 24 goals in 16 matches. I have found the scorers of 22 of these goals.

Emmanuel Fabiyi (born 09.10.1985), who has played for the Benin national football team, is a brilliant goalkeeper, formerly of Enyimba FC.

Tarilaye Nwankwe is a true legend in the central defence of Bayelsa United FC. Apparently, Nwankwe has been with the club since 2000, often being named as team captain. Nwankwe scored one league goal during the season. Onyebuchi Chukwuma is another important player in central defence. Chukwuma, most likely born in 1981, has plenty of top level experience and is a former player of Enyimba FC and Sharks FC.

Job Ayuba is an interesting defender or midfielder who was part of the Nigeria U-20 national football team in 2011. Ayuba scored two goals during the season. Jonathan Zikiye, another defender, was also picked for Nigeria U-20 during 2011.

Attacking midfielder Lucky Omeruo, the brother of Kenneth Omeruo (Chelsea FC, England), scored two goals during the season and was picked for the Nigeria U-20 national football team. Omeruo is obviously a player to watch.

Odili Iyasele is an interesting left-winger who was part of the Nigeria U-20 national football team back in 2004, making it likely that he is born in 1985 or 1986. Iyasele, who scored four goals during the season, is perhaps most known for his stint at Ocean Boys FC. Martins Okpose, who was part of the title-winning team in 2008-2009, is often found on the right-wing. Okpose scored two league goals during the season.

Top scorer for Bayelsa United FC was the rather experienced centre-forward Diri Otimoti with eight goals. Otimoti played for Niger Tornadoes FC last season. Peter Ebimobowei, a talented striker who scored once during the season, was a trialist at SK Brann (Norway) in January 2012. According to Norwegian media, Ebimobowei was 18 years old at the time. The picture is of Ebimobowei and was found on

Other key players include Cyril Edum (one goal during the season) and Tunde Adeboye.

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