By Ijeoma Okigbo
Coach Ramson Madu of Heartland Football Club of Owerri says his team played tougher matches in the Nigeria National League (NNL) than they did in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the club were relegated from the NPFL after the 2015/2016 season, leading to their playing in the NNL in the 2016/2017 season.
They have now secured promotion back to the NPFL with 60 points with an outstanding match against Delta Force FC of Asaba in the Southern Conference of the NNL on Saturday.
Madu, while speaking with NAN on Friday in Abuja, expressed delight with his team’s immediate return to the NPFL.
The Naze Millionaires confirmed their promotion after an away victory over FirstBank FC of Lagos in a week 33 match on Wednesday.
They top the table with five points ahead of second-placed Bayelsa United.
“We are happy to be back to the NPFL. It has been God, with support from our state government and the efforts of the players.
“But playing in the NNL was not easy for us, because we had really tough matches. I will say that the NPFL is not as tough as the NNL,” Madu said.
NAN reports that Kwara United FC and Yobe Deserts Stars of Damaturu finished first and second in the Northern Conference which ended earlier.
The club to join Heartland FC in qualifying from the Southern Conference will emerge after the conference’s week 34 matches on Saturday.
Go Round FC of Port Harcourt who have 54 points are contenders alongside Bayelsa United.