Category Archives: Football

Gov. Fayemi Promises More Support For Football Development…as Ekiti FA Celebrates Him With Friendly Games

Ekiti state literally stood still at the weekend as Ekiti state football association brought the creme dela creme of Nigerian football into Ado-Ekiti, the state’s capital, to celebrate Governor John Kayode Fayemi on his birthday.

The fun filled day gave the impressive crowd at the Oluyemi Kayode stadium, lots of music, dance and of course, raw, entertaining and exciting football matches that had the crowd on the edges of their seats.

JKF, as the Ekiti state governor is called took the official kick off and also cut the beautiful cake presented by members of the NYSC and Ekiti FA, with assistance by some of the dignitaries including NFF 1st Vice president and Chairman of Lagos FA, Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi, Ekiti FA boss, Bayo Olanlege, as well as, Ekiti state Commissioner of Youth and Sports Development, Michael Awopetu.

In the first match, the Ekiti State chapter of the Okada riders association annihilated the Ekiti state artisans association 6-1. And in the main event, Ekiti state football association U16 team, named EKITI BEES played out a pulsating 1-1 draw against South Western Nigeria U16 selected side also interestingly called “Young Panthers”.

The match saw the lads displaying unbridled skill and techniques to the admiration of the dignitaries and the spectators. The “Panthers” made their fluid play and domination count as Faruk Balogun delicately chipped the ball over on rushing Tijani Azeez who was in goal for Ekiti Bees.

The EKSFA U16 responded by taking the game to their opponents and created several goal scoring opportunities that were repeatedly fluffed by the attackers. In one of the moves, Ogunjobi Kehinde missed a sitter after a surging run into the box.

However, in the 42nd minute, Ekiti Bees got the deserved equaliser through captain Olorunfemi Olayanju who cooly slotted ball into the net from the penalty spot with after mesmerising striker, Ogunjobi Kehinde was tripped in the box.

In the 55th minute, play was halted and the spectators rose to give the celebrant a clapping ovation that resonated around the stadium. While the NYSC band played soft tunes, amidst spectacular fireworks also on display.

On the resumption of play, it was end to end stuff by both sides that equally kept the two goalies busy, as they were made to make strings of jaw dropping saves to keep the scoreline even. Expectedly, too, the most valuable player of the 2019 JKF youth cup Damilola Adeyeye, who was the cynosure of all eyes, delighted the fans with his dribbles, wide range of passes and impressive displays on the evening.

Speaking with the press, Dr. Kayode Fayemi expressed delight with the progress of grassroots football in the state so far and promised that his administration will continue to support this progress. He further appreciated the organizers for putting up the event.

On her path, the First Lady of the state, Erelu Bisi Fayemi also promised that she will adopt the Ekiti State football association U16 team, the Ekiti Bees.

Gov. Fayemi Promises More Support For Football Development…as Ekiti FA Celebrates Him With Friendly Games

In his own remark, the Ekiti FA chairman, Mr. Bayo Olanlege appreciated the governor, his wife, the deputy governor and other top government functionaries for gracing the occasion and praised their impacts on football in developing football in Ekiti.

Olanlege was also full of appreciation for the football administrators and stakeholders from the Southwest of Nigeria led by the 1st Vice-President of NFF and Chairman of Lagos State Football Association, Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi, Otunba Tade Azeez, President Nigeria Referees Association, Oba James Adeniran (Oyo State FA), Alhaji Ganiyu Majekodunmi ( NFF executive board Member /Chairman Ogun State FA), Chief Mustapha Rasak ( Osun State FA), and other FA secretaries present at the event.

Akeem Busari

Recovery FC Are Champions of Adonko Festac Football Tournament

The maiden edition of Adonko Festac football tournament was held Saturday, at the popular FHA playground, Festac town and with Recovery football club emerging winners of the one day football tournament.

Eight football teams from Festac town and its environs competed for honours. And it was excitements galore for the spectators, as the teams valiantly strived to claim the title of the competition sponsored by Adonko Alcoholic Bitters.

The tournament was kicked off by the Head International Marketing of Adonko Bitters, Vincent Opare, in the presence of ex-Nigeria international players, former Olympique Marseille striker Victor Agali and former NNB star winger Austin Popo.

After a series of highly competitive and exciting games, it was Recovery football club that claimed the top honours of going home with a mouth watering N100,000 cash prize as champions, defeating hard-fighting New Directions football club 5-4 on penalties after playing goalless in regulation time.

Speaking with the press after the final game, Vincent Opare, expressed his delight with the success of the competition. He commended the teams for displaying a high level discipline and tactical knowledge of the game.

He further remarked that as sponsors, Adonko Bitters, is encouraged and willing to do more to help the growth and development of grassroots football in Lagos and Nigeria, in general.

“Beyond the fact that this is one of the our corporate social responsibility programmes, we are also committed to helping to take the youths off the streets, as well as, getting them positively engaged in sports,” he quipped.

Recovery FC Are Champions of Adonko Festac Football Tournament
Recovery FC Are Champions of Adonko Festac Football Tournament

Ex-Nigeria international player, Victor Agali also commended the organisers and particularly, the sponsors for spending their resources to encourage and develop football at the grassroots level.

On his part, former Nigeria international and NNB of Benin star winger, Austin Popo, also expressed his satisfaction with the standard of play displayed by the footballers and match officials, who interestingly, were young ladies.

Popo, who is also the General Secretary of the National Association of Nigerian Professional Footballers (NANPF), also praised the Adonko Bitters for sponsoring the tournament. He admonished all well placed individuals and corporate bodies to emulate the sponsors by helping to develop grassroots football.

Akeem Busari

Seyi Akinwunmi, Others Storm Ekiti For Gov. Fayemi

Football fans in Ekiti State are set for exciting moments, as stakeholders and other big wigs of the beautiful game in the South Western Nigeria, are set to converge on Ado-Ekiti, Saturday, 8th February, for a novelty football match to commemorate and celebrate the 55th birthday of Ekiti State governor, Dr. John Kayode Fayemi.

In a press release signed by the Chairman of Ekiti State Football Association, Bayo Olanlege, arrangements have been concluded to stage a top class football match between Ekiti State U16 and South West Nigeria U16 teams, as well as a novelty football match between Ekiti State Association of Okada Riders and Ekiti State Artisans, which will be the curtain raiser, to the events lined up to celebrate the state governor fondly called JKF.

He said; “We are set to celebrate our amiable and indefatigable Ekiti State governor, Dr. John Kayode Fayemi on his birthday. This is a man, worthy of celebration. Ekiti state football is presently enjoying new found fervour and growth, which I would say, is attributable to the enabling environment provided by this government,” the ever resourceful football administrator stated.

John Kayode Fayemi
Ekiti State Governor
photo credit: kfayemi.com

The friendly match which is expected to be exciting and competitive and slated for the Oluyemi Kayode stadium, Ado-Ekiti is expected to be witnessed by A-list of football administrators and stakeholders led by the 1st Vice-President of NFF and Chairman of Lagos State Football Association, Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi, Otunba Tade Azeez, President Nigeria Referees Association, Oba James Adeniran (Oyo State).

Other expected guests include Alhaji Ganiyu Majekodunmi ( Ogun), Chief Mustapha Rasak ( Osun), Chief Taiwo Odebunmi, Hon. Akin Akinbobola, Chief Ayo Agbebi,Dotun Coker, Siji Lagunju, as well as, all South West FA secretaries.

Akeem Busari

Phoenix Athletic Sports Club Appoints New General Manager

Nationwide league side Phoenix Athletic Sports Club have announced the appointment of Tope Olaifa, as its new general manager.

According to a statement by the Ado-Ekiti based football club, the appointment of Olaifa became imperative in view of the plans to reposition the club, ahead of its scheduled activities for the new year.

Olaifa, a seasoned football administrator and former player of Adamawa United, while speaking with journalists after the colourful unveiling ceremony, expressed his gratitude to the management of Phoenix ASC for the confidence reposed him to take charge of the club’s affairs.

“This is definitely a big task. However, I am undaunted and ready to work assiduously with the coaches, players and management to take the club to the desired heights,” he stated.

“I have been a part in the establishment and growth of the club since it’s inception. I understand the principles and philosophies of the board of directors. Though I have my job, it will not affect my new responsibilities with Phoenix ASC, as this is not a permanent job.

Tope Olaifa

“What is required is my experience. And as a former footballer and coupled with the experience I have gained in time as a football manager, I am eager to start work,” he enthused confidently.

He went ahead to state that the club shall roll out programmes that would help restructure the club in line with best global practices and also ensure it regain its pride of place, as a model football.

Akeem Busari

Nigeria’s Players Union Frowns at Indiscriminate Sack of Players by Nigerian Clubs

The National Association of Nigerian Professional Footballers (NANPF) has frowned at what has been described as indiscriminate sacking of players by some Nigerian football clubs.

In a statement released by the union’s communication department and signed its president, Tijani Babangida, MON, it unequivocally regarded the acts of sacking who are contracted to the clubs during the season as unfair and unprofessional.

” We are not happy with the unfair treatments meted Nigerian footballers. Unfortunately, it has become recurring acts for Nigerian clubs to sack players on flimsy excuses. It is an act of sheer wickedness and unprofessionalism.

Tijani Babangida
photo credit: Shengolpixs

“We want to advise these clubs to desist from such acts. It is inimical to the development of Nigerian football as well as militating against the welfare of Nigerian footballers,” the former Nigeria international player lamented.

It further advised the affected players to make official reports and also furnish the union with documents on their subsisting contracts with the erring clubs.

Akeem Busari

Ekiti Celebrates First National Sports Festival Football Ticket After 22 years

It was celebrations galore in Ado-Ekiti and its environs in Ekiti state, as football fans and stakeholders danced and jubilated the state qualification for the football event of the national sports festival tagged NSF Edo 2020.

Ekiti state football team picked the second ticket for the NSF football event alongside Lagos State that hosted the South-West zonal elimination games. Ekiti state walked over Ogun state and had earlier in the day, drew with Oyo State.

Ekiti State Football Association

Ekiti State Football Association Chairman, Bayo Olanlege commended the team for qualifying for the NSF football event. He praised the efforts of the state government, the sports council, as well as the technical team for ensuring that the state will return to compete for gold during the national sports festival, after 22 years absence at the Nigerian Olympic games.

The General Manager of Ekiti State Sports Council, Deji Samo, remarked that the qualification is a big achievement for the state. Adding that the sports council would support the team to excel in Edo at the sports festival.

Head coach of the team, Kehinde Anjorin was quick to attribute the feat to hard-work and dedication by everyone involved in the team.He also thanked the state government for providing the environment for the youths in the state to strive for success.

The highly respected football tactician was also effusive in praises for the state football association.

“I must say that we are, indeed, blessed to have this present board of the state FA led by Bayo Olanlege. They have been working hard, innovative and totally committed to the development and growth of football in the state. The FA have also been encouraging coaches and supporting us to excel at all times, ” Anjorin remarked.

He went ahead to promise that the state football team to the sports festival would not relent in the quest for excellence. He also revealed that the team which was dominated by the players discovered at the Bet9ja Ekiti State Football league, would be fortified to ensure it achieve its dreams of winning gold at the games.

Akeem Busari

2022 World Cup: Eagles To Face Cape Verde, Others in Qualifying Campaign

Six–time finalists Nigeria have been drawn to square up against Cape Verde, Central African Republic and Liberia in the penultimate round of the qualifying race for the 2022 FIFA World Cup finals in Qatar.

At a simple but colourful ceremony inside The Nile Ritz-Carlton in Cairo, Egypt on Tuesday evening, conducted by CAF’s Director of Competitions Samson Adamu, Ivorian Clementine Toure and 1998 FIFA World Cup winner Marcel Desailly, the 40 teams remaining in the race on the African continent were drawn into 10 groups of four teams each, with Nigeria heading Group C.

Super Eagles at training

Just like they will fly westward twice in their remaining campaign for a place at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations (Freetown, Sierra Leone and Cotonou, Benin Republic), the Eagles will fly westward twice in the race to Qatar (Praia, Cape Verde and Monrovia, Liberia).

Nigeria’s first game, coming up in October this year, will be against the Lone Star of Liberia, who reached this stage after shoving neighbours Sierra Leone in the first round.

African champions Algeria head Group A and will have two interesting games against the Etalons of Burkina Faso, with Niger Republic and Djibouti also in the pool.

Tunisia’s Carthage Eagles head Group B which also has Zambia, Mauritania and Equatorial Guinea, but the presence of Cameroon and Cote d’Ivoire in Group D makes that pool most interesting. They are joined by Mozambique and Malawi.

Nigeria’s Super Eagles Training In Egypt
photo credit: @NGsupereagles

Meanwhile, Group E looks the most evenly set, with Mali, Uganda, Kenya and Rwanda –none of which had been to the FIFA World Cup previously.

Group G is also mouth-watering, as Ghana, quarter finalists at the only FIFA World Cup finals to have been hosted on African soil, face the country that hosted that finals in 2010, South Africa, as well as Zimbabwe and Ethiopia.

Certainly, Group J is similarly something to savour, as Democratic Republic of Congo, Benin Republic and Madagascar are joined by Tanzania.

Each of the 40 teams will play two matches each towards the end of this year, with the remaining four matches coming up next year. The third and final round of the qualifiers will see the 10 winners of the pools drawn into five explosive home-and-away fixtures that will produce Africa’s flag-bearers in Qatar. Those knockout games come up in November 2021.

 

Super Eagles group photo ahead 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia

GROUP A

Algeria

Burkina Faso

Niger Republic

Djibouti

 

GROUP B

Tunisia

Zambia

Mauritania

Equatorial Guinea

 

GROUP C

Nigeria

Cape Verde

Cemtral African Republic

Liberia

 

GROUP D

Cameroon

Cote d’Ivoire

Mozambique

Malawi

 

GROUP E

Mali

Uganda

Kenya

Rwanda

 

GROUP F

Egypt

Gabon

Libya

Angola

 

GROUP G

Ghana

South Africa

Zimbabwe

Ethiopia

 

GROUP H

Senegal

Congo

Namibia

Togo

 

GROUP I

Morocco

Guinea

Guinea Bissau

Sudan

 

GROUP J

DR Congo

Benin Republic

Madagascar

Tanzania