Defeat or draw for Heartland against Enyimba this weekend will leave them in a precarious situation.
With a paltry 16 points from 21 games, the signs aren’t looking good for the Naze Millionaires.
It is an ominous sign for the Owerri outfit who for many were expected to challenge for a mid table place this season after gaining promotion from the Nigeria National League. However, a relegation battle looks more likely at this juncture.
One of reasons behind their dismal run in the campaign can be laid down to their lack of ability in front of goal. They have managed just 14 goals in 21 matches while shipping 26 at the back.
But, it has not been all doom and gloom for the Owerri outfit. They may have left Kano Pillars empty-handed in the week 19, but their performance that day did not suggest that they would go on to struggle nearly as much as they have done. Their showing against Pillars in the next round was even more encouraging.
They showed glimpses of their quality in the 2-1 loss to Sunshine Stars last weekend.
Some plain bad luck has played its part in their poor form. Their displays have lacked mettle, which has seen them labelled in some quarters as ‘blandiblu’, a reference to a soft slimy goo that children play with.
At this stage, the prospect of dropping down a tier for the second time in three seasons is very real. Should they be relegated, it would be a great shame. This is, after all, a team that has achieved great things.
With five league titles, three FA Cup shied and two Super Cup achievements in their kitty, you wonder why the club is struggling despite their rich history. Relegation would mark its definitive end.
There is still a long way to go. It is too early to speak of the end. Indeed, it may be. The club cannot continue like this. They need to kick start their resurgence with victory over Oriental rivals Enyimba on Sunday.