Akwa United were held back in the title chase after Rivers United equalized late in the game to deny them all maximum points in matchday 33.
The Promise Keepers entered the game needing the win to put them eight points clear from second and third placed Nasarawa United and Kano Pillars respectively, but had to settle for a draw with Rivers United, at the Adokiye Amiesimaka’s Stadium after a late minutes stunner from Bamba Bakari.
The ended all squared at first-half, before man in-form Charles Atshimene gave the visitors a lead in the 53rd minute after pouncing on a poor backward header by Kazie to beat shotstopper, Ovunda Darlingtin.
Rivers United came out firing on all cylinders and nearly got an equalizer in the 73rd minute after Shedrack Oghali’s lofted effort went over Akwa United’s goalkeeper, Jean Efala all for defender Samson Gbadebo to produce a breath-taking goal line clearance to punish his ex employers.
Stanley Eguma then made some tactical adjustments in the choice of his substitutions with Destiny Ashadi and Fortune Omoniwari both coming on for Shedrack Oghali and Morice Chukwu.
Rivers United kept knocking the door seeking for an equalizer and finally saw a breakthrough in the 87th minutes after substitute Fortune Omoniwari set up Bamba Bakari who’s effort from an impossible position got past Jean Efala to end the contest at 1-1.
The result means Akwa United still maintain their top spot on the log with 61 points from 33 games while Rivers United occupies the fifth position with 56 points from same number of games.