Gombe United FC, based in Gombe in the northeastern part of Nigeria , is currently number 8 in the GLO Premier League 2013. It is difficult not to sympathize with the so-called “Desert Scorpions”. Every time Gombe United FC, a rather modest club, produces a quality player, he seems to leave for a bigger club. During the season, Gombe United FC has lost several key players, including full-back Awwalu Aminu (Kwara United FC), attacking midfielder Austin Ekpoma (Dolphins FC), midfielder Abubakar Nazim (Dolphins FC) and top scorer Bishop Onyeudo (Enyimba FC).
Whenever this happens, the club has an amazing ability to find new talent, either fringe players from other Nigerian clubs, players from their own youth set-up, or local youngsters discovered in amateur football.
In this post, you will find basic player information, statistics and a presentation of the most interesting players. At the time of writing, the club has played 26 matches.
The picture is of team captain Alhaji Kwairanga and was found on MTN Football.
|BILYAMINU, Aliyu||M / F||NGA||0|
|GIDADO, Manu Sunday||M||16.10.1986||NGA||1|
|MOHAMMED, Sani||M / F||NGA||1|
* In youngster Umar Maijalingo and veteran Ahmed Yusuf, Gombe United FC has an excellent goalkeeping duo. Maijalingo, formerly of the Yarmalight Football Academy, was part of the Nigeria U-17 national football team back in 2012.
* Peter Jang, formerly of Lobi Stars FC, has been a revelation at centre-back. Jang is a big, powerful defender, easily recognizable due to his long hair. Jang has been partnered by different players, but if the coach would pick his first eleven, I am pretty sure that a injury-free MacMarcel Obioha would be preferred. In 2012, Obioha was training with the Nigeria B national football team. Yusuf Alhassan is an interesting player who has been with the club for at least six seasons. Despite his experience, I am not 100 percent sure about his preferred position on the field, but I would have guessed centre-back or full-back. Demero Efeowie, who failed to break through at Dolphins FC, is a great option at centre-back. As far as I know, Timothy Simon is the preferred left-back, while Kennedy Obiokor is a natural pick at right-back. Simon is an interesting player, well-known for his attacking style of play. Suleman Usman, a defender who has played for the Nigeria Beach Soccer team, is an important member of the team due to his experience and versatility.
* Gombe United FC has several young players and the importance of midfield generals Manu Sunday Gidado and Alhaji Kwairanga can not be underestimated. Youngsters such as Ibrahim Chilli and Ifeanyi Ezeugwu has benefited greatly from playing alongside these quality players. Franklin Freeman, signed from second-level side Gateway FC, is a recent signing who has potential.
Sani Mohammed, also known as Sani Mohammed Sulaiman, is a left-winger or striker who has been sensational since joining the “Desert Scorpions” from the Yarmalight Football Academy, also based in Gombe, northeastern Nigeria. Apparently, Mohammed was 15 years old per July 2013, implying that he is born in 1997 or 1998. Mohammed, a skilful player with tremendous pace, has played regularly for the club since May 2013,, scoring his first ever league goal on 08.06.2013 against Wikki Tourists FC. Aliyu Bilyaminu is another interesting youngster at Gombe United FC, also a former player of the Yarmalight Football Academy. Bilyaminu, also known as Ali Bilyaminu, is a midfielder / striker.
* Left-winger / striker Inyang Asuquo joined the club in May, an excellent signing from Nembe City FC. Last season, Asuquo scored frequently for a promotion winning Nembe City FC, and he should be able to score 3-4 more goals before the season ends.
* As Bishop Onyeudo has left the club, I think the attacking line-up of the club looks a bit thin. Ibrahim Babangida, formerly of Kaduna United FC, Nasarawa United FC and Bayelsa United FC, has done tremendously well and is a big favourite amongst the fans due to his creativity. But Babangida is not a proven goalscorer at this level. The same could be said about Cyril Obodo, who’s real name is Cyril Olisema. Obodo is a highly promising striker, discovered in amateur football.
Victor Barnabas scored a total of 11 goals during the Nigeria Premier League 2010-2011 (eight goals for Enyimba FC and three goals for Lobi Stars FC). Ever since, Barnabas has struggled, partly because of injury problems. At his best, Barnabas is a quality striker with the potential to replace Onyeudo. Oliver Agbo, who scored four goals for Jigawa Golden Stars FC last season, is another experience striker who could score goals at a regular basis.