Thursday, June 17, 2021
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AITEO CUP: Kano Pillars Host Smart City, As Jigawa Clash Plateau, See Full Draws


The Nigeria Football Federation on Thursday conducted the draws for the Round of 16 AITEO Cup competition, with a number of eye–catching fixtures accomplished in the draw, reports.

In the fixture of rounds of 16 Aiteo Cup defending champions Kano Pillars one the pre-competition favorites have an easy fixture as they are drawn against Smart City of Lagos.

Current Nigerian professional football league leaders Akwa United will look to negotiate their way Against Gateway United while Kwara United will lock horns with Kebbi United, Abia Warriors will travel to Zamfara to take on Zamfara United, their will be a big NPFL clash as Jigawa Golden Stars squares up against Plateau United.

A total of 32 teams will battle will battle for the top price of the prestige Aiteo Cup competition formerly known as the (FA Cup) with the winner qualifying for next season’s Caf Confederations cup.

Full draws.

1.Kano Pillars vs Smart FC

  1. Kwara Utd vs Kebbi Utd
  2. Warri Wolves vs Green Berets
  3. Sunshine Stars Vs Kogi Utd
  4. Jigawa GS vs Plateau Utd
  5. Bendel Utd vs Calabar Rovers /Nasarawa Utd
  6. Katsina Utd vs Ngwa Utd/Elkanemi Warriors
  7. FC Technobat Vs 3SC /Gombe Utd
  8. Akwa United vs Gateway Utd
  9. Wikki Tourists vs Osun Utd
  10. Aspire Vs Yobe stars/Lobi
  11. Bayelsa Utd vs NAF /Rangers International
  12. Sokoto Utd Vs Rivers Utd or Go Round FC
  13. Ekiti Utd vs Heartland Utd
  14. Zamfara Utd vs Abia warriors
  15. FC Mai Angwa vs Niger Tornadoes

Excitement as Dettol becomes Official Hygiene Partner of the Super Eagles


The Nigeria Football Federation and Reckitt Benckiser Nigeria Limited
on Thursday in Lagos signed a contractual agreement that immediately
made Reckitt’s product, Dettol the Official Hygiene Partner of the
Super Eagles.

At a simple ceremony inside the Studio2 of HotSports Media Group in Oregun, Akbar Ali Sha, General Manager of Reckitt Benckiser in
Sub-Sahara Africa, described the union between the Football House and his company as a ‘historical moment’, insisting the agreement aligned
firmly with the firm’s purpose, which is “to protect, heal and to
nurture in relentless pursuit of a cleaner and healthier world.”

In this spirit, Dettol is primed to provide hygiene protection for the Super Eagles at every turn before and after every of their matches on the road to and at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations taking place in Cameroon next year summer, and on the road to and at the FIFA World Cup finals taking place in Qatar at the end of next year.

“We will also seek to extend the protection to millions of fans of the Super Eagles through our partnership with the Nigeria Football

The world is presently going through the worst health
crisis in the history of mankind and it is a glorious opportunity to
underscore the importance of hygiene and best health practices around
the Super Eagles and their supporters,” Ali Sha added.

President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Mr Amaju Melvin Pinnick,
acknowledged Dettol as the household name for anti-septic globally,
and expressed the excitement of the football body to welcome the
much-loved product on board. “In truth, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way so many things are done, including the organization of
football itself. We are guided and guarded, and with Dettol, we know we will be the better for it.

“Our goal at the NFF is to attain 80% self-funding by the end of this
year, and I have faith that we will get there. Football is the biggest
single unifier in our country and I believe that makes it one of the
sectors that should be doing exceedingly well. Our vision is to have
corporate support all around our events and activities, and I am
particularly happy that Dettol is here. It is a further vindication
that we are doing things right.

“I want to here and now provide Dettol full assurance that the NFF
will observe the spirit and letter of the entire contract that we have
signed today.”

Also at the event were Mr Tanzim Rezwan (Reckitt’s Marketing Director,
Sub-Sahara Africa); Mustapha Bugaje (Reckitt’s Sales Director,
Nigeria); Mr Taye Ige (President, HotSports Media Group – facilitators
of the agreement); Mr Ademola Olajire (NFF’s Director of
Communications); Mr Yohanna Mathias (NFF’s Director, Audit) and Mr
Alizor Chuks (NFF’s Ag. Director, Marketing).

There was also Super Eagles’ goalkeeper, Ikechukwu Ezenwa.

Alao Reveals Plans For Lagos, Southwest athletics


After emerging as the representative of the Southwest on the newly constituted board of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria, the chairman of the Lagos State Athletics Association, Solomon Alao, has revealed his plans to develop track and field in Lagos State and at the zonal level.

Speaking during the inauguration of the new AFN board by the Minister for Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, in Abuja on Tuesday, Alao said he would be working alongside other state chairmen to develop track and field in the zone.

It would be recalled that Alao defeated the former vice president of the AFN, Olamide George, in the zonal election and has assured athletes and officials of a new dawn.

“Foremost I will say there was no winner as all we are looking forward to is the development of athletics in our zone,” he said.

“I want to use this opportunity to thank those who came out to vote, but I will say the work starts now.

“There are lots of programmes we have experimented with in Lagos since we came on board as an association that yielded positive results, and with this election over, we are going to see how we can replicate them throughout the zone.

“Now, we have to do things in the right way, we have to start earnestly, we have to rebuild, Nigeria must take back its rightful place.

“I have been in sports in the last 20 years, I will bring my experience to bear, on all assignments, I want to tell you that things will begin to change at the Southwest zone.

“I already have a lot of support, I also have a strong pedigree behind me, not just mine alone, but everyone supporting me.”

Ilechukwu Rubbishes Report On Heartland Protest, Boycott Of Ifeanyi Ubah Game


Coach Fidelis Ilechukwu has distanced himself from a news published on Tuesday in a national newspaper which reported that players of Heartland are set to embark on a protest and also boycott the MatchDay 28 game against Oriental Derby rivals, FC Ifeanyi Ubah.

According to Ilechukwu, “This is just another fake news, a cheap means to distract my team and fuel unnecessary tension in Owerri.

“Let me state clearly that the players under my watch will never go on such protest or boycott any NPFL game. How would a Sports Journalist cook such a story when there is security challenges in the South East, let alone boycott an NPFL game.

“He should off course know the negative effects of such actions before he began writing his fake news where he quoted me.

“For record purposes, I did not grant such interview with any reporter on Monday or had a chat with any on social media platform, WhatsApp. I have taken time to go through the call log on phone and chats, no number of such from the reporter that claimed to have interviewed me.

“The reporter has gotten on my nerve and he must face the consequences, I intend to seek the advice of my lawyer before I decide to take him and medium to court. Since I started coaching I have never had any issues with the media as I see them as partners in progress. During interviews I chose my words carefully as I don’t want to be misquoted because I know the negative consequences.

“This is the kind of issues I want to avoid. Of late some media have said to my face that am been selective with who I grant interviews with.”

Speaking further, “I understand what the players are agitating for, like I have maintained, I want to use this medium to reassure the players that Governor Hope Uzodinma who is the club’s number one fan will take care of the situation.

“Like every other teams in the NPFL have their challenges and that of Heartland is no different. So all hands would be on deck to proffer solutions to them as we move on.”

AFN: Nilayo Sports Management Limited, Bukola Olopade Congratulates Tonobok Okowa


The Chief Executive Officer of Nilayo Sports Management Limited, Hon. Bukola Olopade has congratulated Chief Tonobok Okowa on his emergence as the President of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN).

Hon. Olopade noted that Chief Okowa’s emergence is capable of further strengthening and taking Athletics in Nigeria to a greater height and expressed optimism that his reign as the AFN head will be extremely fruitful.

The former Commissioner for sports in Ogun State whose Marketing company, Nilayo Sports Management Limited has its stronghold in Athletics revealed that Nilayo Sports Management Limited is looking forward to a continious synergy with the AFN particularly at a time that the maiden edition of the Ijebu Heritage Half Marathon is approaching.

“On behalf of everyone at Nilayo Sports Management Limited, I say Congratulations to Chief Tonobok Okowa, we are quite excited about his triumph, his rich CV gives us a confidence that Athletics will continue to be on the rise in Nigeria”.

“Athletics is our first love at Nilayo Sports so we are elated that a capable, intelligent and influential administrator has emerged”.

Hon. Olopade assured the new AFN boss of the unflinching support of Nilayo Sports and stressed that he’s already looking forward to an envisaged working relationship.

Nilayo Sports Management Limited are the right owners of the prestigious Access Bank Lagos City Marathon, the IAU African Championship, and the great Abeokuta 10km race among other notable sporting events in the country.

Monimichelle Offers Advice On How To Improve Bad Pitches In Nigeria


Nigeria’s leading sports facilities construction outfit, Monimichelle has offered advice on how to fix the poor pitches in Nigeria.

Chief Executive Officer of the company, Ebi Egbe told NSM yesterday that he desired to partner with the Federal and state governments in eradicating bad pitches in the country.

“Without good pitches we will continue to produce quarterly baked players from our various leagues,” Monimichelle began during an educative conversation on WhatsApp Platform NSM.

“The world football transfer market knows Nigeria has talented young players even though we lack infrastructures for grassroot football development, that’s the reason why there is so much interest from top scouts in the Nigerian under 17 national team.

“Under 17 players are still at grooming stage, they can easily adapt to any style of play on a zero undulated properly constructed pitch.

Egbe offered advice on ways by which things can improve.

“If we have to step up our game in the global football scene we need to invest in sustainable football infrastructures.

“My dream is to move Nigeria from producing quarterly baked lads to medium-sized players from our local league,” he explained.

“I want to see a Nigerian league player move from my favourite team Enyimba to PSG not moving to one lower league for brushing up before moving to a top league.”

He reminded the forum about some of his projects and others still in the cooler.

“Mohammodu Dikko Stadium, Remo Stars Stadium, Enyimba International Stadium, Samson Siasia Stadium, Aper Aku Stadium, Onikan Stadium and Akwa Township Stadium. A host of others are coming up in Nigeria, Ghana, Gambia, Sudan and Cote d’Ivoire.

“There is no stopping for Africa transforming our bad pitches to TV friendly sustainable pitches. Rome was not built in a day, it’s a gradual process and the process has been activated,” he added.

The FIFA licensed football agent said that Monimichelle is a company that uses local content as it understands the African market, the topography and the need to put in a facility that will stand the test of time.

Nigeria Lose Out To Cameroon In The Quarter Final Of The Africa Women Handball Championship


Nigeria were recipient of a big defeat in the hands of host Cameroon at the Africa Women Handball Championship on Tuesday.

In a match decided at the Yaounde Multipurpose Sports Complex, the Coach Rafiu Salami tutored side were no match for Cameroon who inflicted huge 44-14 victory on them.

The Senior Women National Handball team were thoroughly beaten in the first half which ended 26-3 and a second half surge wasn’t enough as they went on to lose to Cameroon 44-14; a defeat against the host for the second time in this competition.

Nigeria will now play a classification match against Senegal on Wednesday.

AFCON 2021: Sierra Leone Returns After 25 Years In Wilderness


The National football team of Sierra Leone will make an appearance in next years biggest football showpiece in the Continent, the African cup of Nations (AFCON) in Cameroon after they defeated the Squirrels of Benin Republic 1-0 to qualify for the first time in Twenty five years, reports.

Kei Kamara was the hero as his 19th-minute penalty goal secured qualification for Sierra Leone in a game that was surrounded with a whole lots of Covid19 controversies which ensured it suffered two postponement from its earlier scheduled dates before being finally played today on a neutral ground at the Stade Général Lansana Conté in Conakry, Guinea.

The results placed Leone Stars second with Seven points behind the Super Eagles of Nigeria who had finished top of Group L with 14 points, Sierra Leone where however equal on points with Benin Republic, but qualified on superior goal difference.

Sierra Leone thus returned to AFCON after 25 years of absence with their last appearance at South Africa 1996 tournament.

AITEO CUP 2021: Lobi Stars, Naija Ratels To Represent Benue State


Nigeria Women Football League (NWFL) Championship side, Naija Ratels and Lobi Stars FC have emerged as representatives of Benue State for the upcoming Federation Cup also known as the AITEO Cup.

This was made known through a letter issued by the Benue State Football Association Secretary-General, Mr Lorngulum Malu to the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) on Sunday evening. The F.A scribe also noted that Naija Ratels FC were the only women football side in the state, that registered for the 2021 State F.A Cup.

Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) side, Lobi Stars FC of Makurdi are the state’s defending Champions while Naija Ratels will be participating in the AITEO Cup for the first time ever.

Meanwhile, Naija Ratels FC have intensified training ahead of the NWFL Championship season, which will kick start on the 22nd of June in Abuja. The ‘Ratels’ will battle Gallant Queens, Adamawa Queens, Heartland Queens, Kwara Ladies and Kaduna Queens for a Premiership slot.

The Benue State Football Association Secretary on behalf of the body tasked both teams to go all out and make the State proud at the National stages of the 2021 AITEO Cup.

NOC Organises IOC Sports Administration Seminar For Nigeria Army In Kaduna


The Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) under the auspices of the International Olympic Committee is organizing a-3 day Seminar on Sports Administration for senior executive and physical training officers of the Nigeria Army from today Tuesday 15th to Thursday 17th June, 2021 in Zaria, Kaduna State.

The Sports Administration Course is designed to equip participants with the knowledge and tools that will assist them to bring about change and improvements in their sports organizations. This course is also to help stakeholder develop, maintain solid and sustainable administrative structures that are able to deliver the support needed by the athletes and the Administrators

This edition of the programme is going to be on virtual and physical spaces and will be anchored by the Senior Manager, Nigeria Olympic Committee, Nweri Emmanuel; Olumide Oyedeji, Chairman, NOC Athletes’ Commission. As well as Prof (Mrs) Florence Adeyanju, Human and Kinetic Department, Abu Zaria,
Prof. Clement Fasan and Dr. Moronfolu both of the Department Of Physical and Health Education, Lagos State University as facilitators while Engineer Habu Ahmed Gumel, President of the Nigeria Olympic Committee will declare the seminar open.