P.M. NEWS Nigeria » Nigeria Premier League http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com First with Nigeria News - Nigerian leading evening Newspaper - Tue, 28 Jul 2015 07:10:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.3 Glo League: Udube joins Bosso at Abia Warriors http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/14/glo-league-udube-joins-bosso-at-abia-warriors/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/14/glo-league-udube-joins-bosso-at-abia-warriors/#comments Tue, 14 Jul 2015 18:47:03 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246203 Willy Udube

Willy Udube

The management of Umuahia based Glo Premier League outfit, Abia Warriors Football Club says it recently engaged the services of Coach Willy Udube to further strengthen the technical crew of the team for the challenges ahead.

A statement by the Media Officer of the club, Igwe Onuoha says the Secretary of Abia Warriors FC, Mr. Oliver Ndife noted that although the technical crew led by Ladan Bosso has not been found wanting, there was still need to further strengthen the bench for maximum result.

The Imo state-born Udube, who once played for Heartland FC of Owerri, recently signed the dotted lines to pitch his tent with Abia Warriors less than two weeks after he was disengaged by the management of Ifeanyi Uba Football Club of Nnewi, alongside other members of the club’s technical crew.

Ndife clarified that Udube has been employed as a coach and not as the club’s Chief Coach as was erroneously reported in some media, pointing out that he is expected to bring his experience to bear at the club.

According to the Abia Warriors scribe, Udube, who took then Gabros International from the Nigeria National League to the Premier Division, has since resumed duties in Umuahia.

Endowed with great technical qualities, Udube was once part of the technical crew of the Naze Millionaires, Heartland FC of Owerri and he is joining Abia Warriors’ consortium of coaches led by widely travelled Isa Ladan Bosso as the Technical Adviser while Chijioke Osuagwu, who took the team from the lower division to the Premier League remains the club’s Chief Coach.

Kelvin Ejeh and Igwe Madubuike are also assistant coaches while Fancy Ewulu, who was recently part of the Flying Eagles’ technical bench to the 2015 New Zealand FIFA U-20 World Cup, has returned to Umuahia to resume his duties as Abia Warriors.

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Glo Hails Premier League Strikers http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/01/glo-hails-premier-league-strikers/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/01/glo-hails-premier-league-strikers/#comments Wed, 01 Jul 2015 11:55:30 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=244648 Title sponsor of Glo Premier League, Gobacom has commended league strikers for their consistency in goal-scoring in the current season so far.

“We are delighted with the number of goals scored by the strikers as it has emphasized our belief that the league has improved in terms of quality,” it said.

Week 13 matches recorded 20 goals, while 22 goals were scored in week 14 in ten match centres, indicating the determination of Glo Premier League strikers to continuously increase the goal tally as the competition gathers momentum.

“This development, we believe, highlights excellent officiating and fair play by all concerned and we wish to particularly applaud the League Management Company for this great turnaround in the league,” Globacom said.

Globacom also expressed delight at the performances of teams on away grounds which have resulted in defeats and draws for home teams which hitherto took victories for granted.

The telecoms company also commended the league coaches and technical advisers for bringing the best out of the marksmen.

Meanwhile, Wikki United of Bauchi has shot to the top of the Glo Premier League table with 27 points.

The team amassed 6 points back to back by defeating Sharks of Port Harcourt in week 13 at home and recorded an away victory against Ifeanyi Ubah FC in week 14.

Sunshine FC of Akure with 26 points moved to the second position while Enyimba of Aba also with 26 points but with fewer goals occupies the third position on the log.

Perennial league leaders, Enyimba and Kano Pillars have not found it easy this season.

Right from the beginning of the season they had occupied the middle of the table, and it was only recently that Enyimba, after recording some home victories and picking points on the road, moved up to the third position while Kano Pillars is still battling to move up.

Action continues on Wednesday in week 15 of Glo Premier League with matches slated for ten venues as teams struggle for three vital points at stake.

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Amun Hails Tough Contests In Glo League http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/29/amun-hails-tough-contests-in-glo-league/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/06/29/amun-hails-tough-contests-in-glo-league/#comments Mon, 29 Jun 2015 15:10:35 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=244385 As interesting results continue to trail Globacom sponsored Nigeria Professional Football League this season, Fanny Amun, former scribe of Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, has attributed the outcome of games to the innovations in the league.

He reckoned that the days of home teams having easy ride against visiting teams are over.

In week 14 games played over the weekend, Wikki Tourists picked maximum points away against FC Ifeanyi Ubah, while in an impressive second half resurgence, struggling Dolphins FC secured a valuable 2-2 result at the Sani Abacha Stadium against league champions Kano Pillars.

Shooting Stars Sports (3SC) under new coach, Gbenga Ogunbote, pulled an away draw at FC Taraba.

Fanny Amun

Fanny Amun

Amun observed that teams must now play their hearts out to secure the points whether home or away.

“Innovation has come into the league and everyone is happy about it. Winning at all costs in home games has seemingly been eliminated. Teams struggle these days to win points at home and results so far show that things are being done right as of now. I am not talking about tomorrow,” Amun said.

Meanwhile, Rangers defender Ousmane Sane has said that Sunshine Stars were a tough nut to crack when they clashed in a Nigeria league Week 14 game in Enugu.

A first-half strike by Alex Emenike gave home team Rangers the full points at the expense of the erstwhile league leaders. However, Senegalese defender Sane admitted Rangers had to really dig deep to carry the day.

“Firstly I thank God for the victory. To beat Sunshine Stars was not easy; they are very good and hard team to play against. I thank God we scored and were able to keep our goal till the end of the game,” Sane told AfricanFootball.com.

“They were very physical and we had to be clever to stop their strikers from scoring goals and our goalkeeper also made some big saves to shut them out,” he said.

Rangers have now moved three places up to eighth on the back of this home win, while Sunshine slipped to second spot.

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CAF suspends Warri Wolves goalkeeper for one year for spitting at match official http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/27/caf-suspends-warri-wolves-goalkeeper-for-one-year-for-spitting-at-match-official/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/27/caf-suspends-warri-wolves-goalkeeper-for-one-year-for-spitting-at-match-official/#comments Wed, 27 May 2015 05:52:52 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=240578 CAF President, Issa Hayatou

CAF President, Issa Hayatou

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has suspended for 12 months goalkeeper Tejiri Rhiogbere of Warri Wolves for spitting at a match official, with the possibility of a worldwide ban.

NAN reports that the suspension was one of many decisions taken at the meeting of the Disciplinary Board of the continental football body.

The meeting was held on Sunday in Cairo, Egypt.

The 28-year-old goalkeeper was reported to have spat at the First Assistant Referee during their second round second leg match in the 2015 CAF Confederation Cup competition.

Warri Wolves FC had won the match against FC MK of DR Congo in Kinshasa 1-0 on May 1 to advance to the third round on a 3-1 aggregate.

Rhiogbere who was listed as a substitute during the match now faces a worldwide ban as CAF has now forwarded his case to world governing body FIFA.

FIFA may then decide to extend the suspension on the international level, depending on the way it sees the offence and how it affects its rules on players’ conduct.

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Invest in the local league, football experts tell Dangote http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/24/invest-in-the-local-league-football-experts-tell-dangote/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/24/invest-in-the-local-league-football-experts-tell-dangote/#comments Sun, 24 May 2015 14:11:11 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=240310 Aliko Dangote, President Dangote Group

Aliko Dangote, President Dangote Group

Football lovers in the country have requested Africa’s richest man, Aliko Dangote, to buy into one of the local league clubs in order to help the growth of soccer.

According to some of them, all that some of the clubs need are massive injection of funds to help them to grow like some in the developed leagues such as the English league.

Some of the fans made the plea in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) from various parts of the country, against the backdrop of Dangote’s latest bid to buy into Arsenal FC of London.

Dangote was said to have in 2010 made a futile attempt to buy Lady Nina Bracewell-Smith’s 15.9 per cent stake in the London club.

Recently too, he was reported to have made another bid that had also been turned down.

Undaunted, he was said to have even vowed to make another offer they might not turn down The fans said they were mindful that he had the resources to do so, going by reports in the American Forbes Magazine that put his fortunes at around 3.3 billion dollars (about 2.18 billion pounds).

Even though many acknowledged his bid for Arsenal take over are legitimate as a businessman out to invest for profit but insisit that corporate social responsibility demanded he should also invest in Nigeria, where he made the bulk of his fortunes.

Arsenal club was founded in 1886 (129 years ago) and currently valued at 1.3 billion pounds as at May 2015. An American, Stan Kroenke is the largest shareholder with 41, 574 shares (66.82 per cent) in the club.

A former Green Eagles Coach, Adegboye Onigbinde said: “for him not to think of our league shows that something is terribly wrong.

“We do not have a structure. In fact going by FIFA regulations, none of our clubs has met the required standards of a club that a person like Dangote could have owned”.

He, however, said the proposal by the businessman was all about business decision. “We should not be emotional on that ground”.

“It is only when you bring in patriotism that it looks morally wrong, but first and foremost, he is a businessman. And so is only normal for him to spread his tentacles wisely.

“Business and sentiments do not mix. If I may advise, I think what we need more in this country is someone to back the overhauling of our grassroots programmes.

“If Dangote decides to focus on sports development, the youth of this country will not forget him because sports in general are what has brought fame to some ghetto children,” Onigbinde said.

Amos Adamu, a former Director-General, National Sports Commission (NSC) told NAN that the attitude of Nigerians did not encourage investors to finance local clubs.

“It is practical, there are people in Nigeria that have never been to the stadium to watch the Nigerian league matches but as businessmen will naturally align with success.

“These same people will do anything within their means to ensure that they watch international leagues like the Barclays Premier League and co; they are die-hard supporters of teams like Arsenal.

“We are looking at it as football, but it is business for him, but people investing in football are doing it to make more money.

“He has interest and he can make more money from it so why not, it is purely business no strings attached. There are certain things you like in life that makes you happy,” Adamu said.

Felix Owolabi, a former Eagles player said the businessman’s intension was based on making more returns on his investment because of how lucrative football had become.

“To start with he is a business tycoon that wants to expand his frontiers. So, I personally have no problems with that, there is no point bringing elements of morality into this”.

Ajibola Lagbaja, a soccer enthusiast based in Akure said that after Dangote had been able to put the – league in world map, then he could invest in Arsenal.

“I can’t blame him, he is a businessman and he will ensure that Arsenal gets the best players in the world. But before he expends on a foreign club, he should start by helping to develop our league in the country”.

Mayowa Ademoyegun, Personal Assistant to the Chairman, Ondo State Football Agency (ODSFA) said it would be a good one for Arsenal if Dangote could invest in it.

“Purchase of Arsenal club by Dangote is a good one for me as a fan of the club. It will be a welcome development”.

Tosin Adeyemi, another Akure-based enthusiast said Dangote should collaborate with the authorities running the Glo Premier League to improve it.

Adeyemi noted that although the profit might not come immediately as expected, but that it would be a long term project.

NAN reports that since inception of the club, it has won 13 first Division Cups and 11 FA cups, and reached the finals of UEFA Cup in 2000, indeed, the first London team to appear in a UEFA Champions League. That was in 2006.

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NPFL: 9 Referees Face Sack http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/19/npfl-9-referees-face-sack/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/19/npfl-9-referees-face-sack/#comments Tue, 19 May 2015 14:45:28 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=239872 Three referees and six assistant referees in the Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL, are under probe and could be axed if found guilty of allegations levelled against them.

The League Management Company (LMC) said it has made an official complaint on the performance of the referees and assistant referees to the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) referees committee over the conduct of the match officials in weekend’s NPFL matches.

Supersport.com  reports early today that the referees are being singled out over “allegations of poor officiating, questionable calls and lack of diligence” during three matches in the top flight on Sunday.

NPFL referees

NPFL referees

The three referees are Henry Ogunyamodi, Ahmed Dan Zaria and Patrick Nworie while the assistant referees are Olajide Awosakin, Justin Takyun, Alfa Abdulganiyu, Muktar Ismail, Abraham Iriabor and Andy Ubani.

“The League Management Company (LMC) has lodged a complaint with the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Referees Committee against three referees and their assistants for poor officiating in some of the fixtures played on Sunday, 17 May.

“The LMC asked the Referees Committee to have the officials stepped down from further games should they have been appointed pending the outcome of investigation. The match officials are facing allegations of poor officiating, questionable calls and lack of diligence,” part of the statement from the LMC on Monday revealed.

The trio of Ogunyamodi, Awosakin and Takyun handled the Gabros FC versus Sharks match while Dan Zaria, Abdulganiyu and Muktar took charge of the Wikki Tourists and Lobi Stars game.

Nworie, Iriabor and Ubani were the match officials for the Nasarawa United and Sunshine Stars clash at the Lafia City Stadium.

The LMC’s chief operating officer, Salihu Abubakar, said the move is to protect the integrity and outcome of the NPFL matches.

In April, referee John Charles and assistant referee Ogunta Matador were suspended for the rest of the season by the NFF referees committee for poor officiating in the game between Sunshine Stars and Dolphins.

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Sunshine Stars, Nasarawa Utd play 1-1 draw in Lafia http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/17/sunshine-stars-nasarawa-utd-play-1-1-draw-in-lafia/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/17/sunshine-stars-nasarawa-utd-play-1-1-draw-in-lafia/#comments Sun, 17 May 2015 21:05:34 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=239681 Sunshine Stars

Sunshine Stars

Sunshine Stars Football Club of Akure on Sunday in Lafia secured a point against hosts Nasarawa United FC in a 1-1 draw which ended with acrimony.

NAN reports that the 2014/2015 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) week nine encounter at the Lafia Township Stadium was trailed by discontent.

This was after the visitors had a goal disallowed by the referee.

NAN reports that the first 25 minutes of the encounter saw both teams trying hard to break each other’s defence but failing in the process.

However, in the 28th minute, Sunshine Stars got a breakthrough through Dayo Ojo who sprinted past the opposition defence and crossed to Edunma Kingsley to score.

But his goal was disallowed by the centre referee after the assistant referee raised his flag for an offside infringement.

Nasarawa United players seemed to have found their rhythm after this, and started causing problems for the Sunshine Stars’ back four, but the away team withstood their pressure.

They finally broke through in the 41st minute after Ugochukwu Leonard was brought down by a Sunshine Stars defender in the penalty area and the referee subsequently awarded a penalty kick.

Sunshine Stars players and coaching crew disagreed with this, and the Sunshine Stars players left the pitch for three minutes.

After the return of normalcy, Sogbeso Seun scored from the penalty spot to put the home side ahead.

After the break, NAN reports that the visiting team put on an improved performance and were rewarded with an equaliser in the 64th minute.

This was after Kingsley capitalised on a misjudgement by the Nasarawa United defence to slot home from close range.

NAN reports that in the closing stages of the game, there was a late frenzy for a winning goal from the home side.

But brilliant saves from Sunshine Stars’ goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa ensured that the boys from Akure returned home with a point.

In an interview with NAN, Kennedy Boboye, the Head Coach of Sunshine Stars, praised his boys for their efforts.

But he blasted the centre referee for cancelling an early goal scored by his team in the first half.

“It is absolute rubbish. I don’t know how they can still allow the man to officiate in the Nigerian Premier League. The goal scored in the first half was a clean goal.

“I don’t see how he can deny a goal like that.

“Also, the two teams didn’t play well because of the pitch,” he said.

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‘No Excuse Losing To 3SC In Glo League’ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/07/no-excuse-losing-to-3sc-in-glo-league/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/05/07/no-excuse-losing-to-3sc-in-glo-league/#comments Thu, 07 May 2015 12:29:17 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=238685 Okey Emordi is the latest manager under pressure in the Globacom sponsored Nigeria Premier League leading his players to another slump which seemingly puts his defending champions toga on the line.

Pillars were knocked down 1-0 in Ibadan yesterday and Emordi; who won the CAF Champions League with Enyimba, says there are no excuses for his team’s failure.

•3SC in action during a recent Nigeria premier leagues match

•3SC in action during a recent Nigeria premier leagues match3sc


The champions have failed to pick points in three straight away games; a reflection of what the current season looks like for the Masu Gida side.

“I don’t think it’s an excuse for failing to score or win that our key players are absent. The others should take up the chance to play and prove themselves,” Emordi said after the match at Adamasingba Stadium in the ancient city of Ibadan, capital of Oyo State.

The game was a rescheduled fixture (week 3) and the home manager, Franklin Howard reiterated 3SC needed the non-negotiable three points.

Franklin Howard said: “We got the job done which is important, though towards the end of the game we were under pressure.

Next stop for the Oluyole Warriors is a short trip to Akure where their resurgence, Howard certainly hopes will continue.

“Now we have to focus on the next game in Ondo State against Sunshine Stars of Akure.”

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Moghreb Tetouan demolish Kano Pillars http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/22/moghreb-tetouan-demolish-kano-pillars/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/22/moghreb-tetouan-demolish-kano-pillars/#comments Sun, 22 Mar 2015 13:43:59 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=233926 Mouhcine Iajour bags a hat-trick to sink Kano Pillars

Mouhcine Iajour bags a hat-trick to sink Kano Pillars

Mouhcine Iajour scored a 22-minute hat-trick as Moroccans Moghreb Tetouan thrashed Nigerians Kano Pillars 4-0 this weekend in the CAF Champions League.

He struck after 14, 27 and 35 minutes of the delayed last-32, first-leg match at Stade Saniat Rmel in northern Morocco and Zaid Krouch added a last-minute fourth goal.

The hat-trick makes 29-year-old Iajour the leading Champions League scorer this season with four goals, having got one in a dramatic preliminary-round triumph over Malians CO Bamako.

While Tetouan were favoured to win at home, even their most partisan supporters would not have dreamt that the success would be so convincing.

The Moroccans survived a preliminary-round scare by scoring three unanswered second-leg goals after losing 2-0 in Mali.

Pillars cruised to away and home victories over South Sudanese Al-Malakia in the previous round with Gambo Muhammed bagging three goals.

Muhammed missed the trip to Morocco as he is recovering from gunshot wounds sustained when Pillars were victims of armed robbers while travelling to a domestic fixture this month.

Pillars host the return match during the first weekend of April at Sani Abacha Stadium in northern city Kano.

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Glo League: 3SC Battle Heartland http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/13/glo-league-3sc-battle-heartland/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/13/glo-league-3sc-battle-heartland/#comments Fri, 13 Mar 2015 13:17:12 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=233169 3SC will hope to record their first win of the season when they host Heartland on Saturday in the Globacom sponsored Nigeria Premier League Week 2 game at the Lekan Salami Stadium, Adamasingba in Ibadan, Oyo State.

•Mutiu Adegoke of 3SC in action during a recent Nigeria premier leagues match

•Mutiu Adegoke of 3SC in action during a recent Nigeria premier leagues match

The top-flight returnees suffered a 2-0 loss to Wikki Tourists in Bauchi on the opening day of the new campaign, but the team are fired up for a win against ‘The Naze Millionaires’, the club media officer Jubril Arowolo told AfricanFootball.com

“We are going for a total victory in the game. All the players are fit for the game and have been giving their best in training.”  It will be Heartland’s first game of the new season after their home match against Kano Pillars was shifted.

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Kano Pillars match called off after bus attack http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/06/kano-pillars-match-called-off-after-bus-attack/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/03/06/kano-pillars-match-called-off-after-bus-attack/#comments Fri, 06 Mar 2015 09:25:39 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=232250 Photo: Tribune Nigeria

Photo: Tribune Nigeria

An opening day fixture of the new Nigeria Premier League season involving champions Kano Pillars has been postponed after armed robbers shot and wounded at least five players.

The League Management Company (LMC) announced that Saturday’s match with Heartland was called off because of the attack on Thursday as Pillars travelled to the game in Owerri, eastern Nigeria.

Striker Mohammed Gambo, midfielder Eneji Otekpa and defender Reuben Ogbonnaya were among those who suffered bullet wounds when robbers opened fire after stealing cash and telephones.

“We are still in shock after the robbery,” said Pillars defender Isaac Loute.

“They just opened fire at the bus and the bus stopped, the next thing they started asking us to bring out our money, which we did. They collected money and our phones.

“After which they still shot some of our players. We thank God nobody died,” he added.

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Glo League First Round Fixtures Released http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/02/19/glo-league-first-round-fixtures-released/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/02/19/glo-league-first-round-fixtures-released/#comments Thu, 19 Feb 2015 13:32:12 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=230559 First round fixtures of Globacom sponsored 2014/2015 Nigeria Professional Football League season shows that People’s Elephant, Enyimba FC will trade tackles with Akwa United of Uyo at the Enyimba International Stadium on 7 March.

Champions Kano Pillars are away to Heartland FC in Owerri, while El-Kanemi Warriors, who will still play their home matches in Kano as they did last season, host Nasarawa United FC.

Top cadre returnees 3SC of Ibadan are away to fellow returnees Wikki Tourists in Bauchi while Sunshine Stars visit Sharks FC in Port Harcourt and Giwa FC are at home to Abia Warriors in Jos.

Meanwhile, as part of preparations for kick-off of the Professional Football League season, the Nigeria Football Federation will hold a seminar for Premier League referees on Thursday, 5 March.

A seminar for match commissioners has already been slated for 2-3 March in Abuja, with another seminar for Match Assessors to hold in Abuja at a date to be determined.

Chairman of the NFF Referees Committee, Yusuf Ahmed Fresh confirmed the dates, adding that a seminar for referees in the National League and Nationwide League will hold in the different zones 7-8 March.

Week One Matches

Enyimba vs Akwa United

Wikki Tourists vs 3SC

El-kanemi Warriors vs Nasarawa United

Sharks FC vs Sunshine Stars

Dolphins FC vs Kwara United

Giwa FC vs Abia Warriors

Heartland FC vs Kano Pillars

Bayelsa United vs Lobi Stars

Gabros FC vs Warri Wolves

FC Taraba vs Enugu Rangers

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CAF Champs League: Enyimba coach confident of better showing http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/02/13/caf-champs-league-enyimba-coach-confident-of-better-showing/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/02/13/caf-champs-league-enyimba-coach-confident-of-better-showing/#comments Fri, 13 Feb 2015 07:46:37 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=229770 Kadiri Ikhana

Kadiri Ikhana

Former title-holders Enyimba of Nigeria will tread warily when the 2015 CAF Champions League kicks off this weekend even though rivals Buffles Borgou of Benin are weak and inexperienced.

The 2003 and 2004 African champions from south-east city Aba were expected to go far in the competition last year.

But after scraping past Togolese Anges Notse, they lost at home to Malians Real Bamako and a second-leg recovery could not prevent a shock, early exit.

Coach Kadiri Ikhana, who also coached the 2003 Champions League-winning team, believes that disastrous campaign is behind the team popularly known as the Peoples’ Elephant.

“I am confident that we will do better than last year and progress very far in the Champions League this time,” he assured reporters.

“However, we must be careful not to underrate Buffles. The key is to prepare adequately so that we are not taken by surprise.

“There are no small teams in the CAF club competitions and we must treat our opponents seriously in order to achieve a good result.

“It is a good tie for us because of the limited travel involved,” said Ikhana, referring to Benin and Nigeria being west African neighbours.

Enyimba prepared for Africa by playing in a six-team domestic tournament as the national league has not kicked off.

As they seek a commanding first-leg lead over Champions League debutants Buffles, Enyimba expect goals from striker Mfon Udoh, scorer of a record 23 in the league last season.

Midfielder Rasheed Olabiyi is a skilful playmaker and skipper Chinedu Udoji a slow but effective central defender.

Kano Pillars, the other half of a twin-pronged Nigerian challenge for the biggest African Football Confederation (CAF) club prize, tackle Al-Malakia in South Sudan.

The northern club are guided by Okey Emordi, coach of Enyimba when they retained the Champions League in 2004.

Pillars made an even earlier exit last year than Enyimba, losing a preliminary tie against eventual runners-up V Club from the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Malakia are a much weaker side than V Club, though, and it would be a shock if a Kano team bolstered by 10 close-season signings fail to advance.

It is 20 years since Orlando Pirates became the only South African winners of the competition and Kaizer Chiefs and Mamelodi Sundowns believe they can go all the way this year.

“We have a team that can compete against anybody in the world,” boasted Chiefs official Bobby Motaung ahead of a home game against Township Rollers from Botswana.

Sundowns are away to Saint Michel United in the Seychelles and coach Pitso Mosimane has high hopes of bettering second place in 2001 behind Egyptians Al-Ahly.

“I want to win the Champions League, the club president (Patrice Motsepe) wants to win it, the players want to win it, and our supporters want us to win it,” said Mosimane.

An attractive east Africa fixture pits Azam, who ended the Young Africans and Simba monopoly of the Tanzanian title last year, against vastly experienced Sudanese visitors El-Merrikh.

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Lagos FA Election: Players’ Union Kicks Against List http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/01/26/lagos-fa-election-players-union-kicks-against-list/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/01/26/lagos-fa-election-players-union-kicks-against-list/#comments Mon, 26 Jan 2015 15:05:43 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=227878 Ahead of the 10 February, 2015 election into the board of Lagos State Football Association, LSFA, the Association of Professional Footballers of Nigeria, APFON, is raising eyebrows over the list of delegates that will vote during the election.

The players’ union, one of the major stakeholders in football all over the world, are contesting the fact that while the statutes of Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, Article 28 Section 1 (d) specifies that the players’ association which is subordinate to the NFF shall present three delegates for the Elective Congress, the 2010 Statutes of LSFA, which will be applied for the 10 February election in its Article 26 on Delegates and Votes, there is no provision for the players’ association as it is seen on the NFF’s statutes.

“When we saw this anomaly, we immediately wrote to Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi, who is the Vice President of the NFF, and the chairman of Lagos FA who said that he was not aware of this and promised that he would look into it,” said Austin Popo, Executive Secretary of APFON.

“I mandated our Lagos chapter to make a written complaint to the Electoral Committee of the LSFA, which informed that they had replied, though I’ve not seen the reply. I want to make it clear that while other states are giving the players’ union right to present delegates for their FA elections, I don’t see any reason why Lagos’s own will be different.

“APFON is also a custodian of the rules as an affiliate and member of the congress and this is supposed to reflect in the statute of the Lagos FA. We should not be the only body that would be exempted by Lagos. We’ll ensure that the right thing is done especially when the chairman is the vice president of the NFF and a legal practitioner,” he said.

In his reaction, Mr. Wale Joseph, a member of the Lagos FA told P.M.NEWS that the APFON, Lagos chapter is economical with the truth as they have since been given one slot in the delegates’ list for the election.

He added that their demand to be given a slot in the Divisional Football Association (DFA) level would be hard to achieve as they are not affiliated to any of the DFAs.

“What they are demanding as far as I know is at the DFA levels. They have a vote during the election. I think they have not read the statute very well. If there is any problem, they should write to us so that we can amicably sort things out,” said Joseph.

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Agbonavbare Dying Of Cancer http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/01/21/agbonavbare-dying-of-cancer/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/01/21/agbonavbare-dying-of-cancer/#comments Wed, 21 Jan 2015 12:57:59 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=227241 Taiwo Adelu

Former Nigerian international goalkeeper, Wilfred Agbonavbare is clinging to his life as he battles to survive cancer at a Spanish hospital.

The ex-Rayo Vallecano goalie, who been relocated back to Spain after spending five months in a Tampa, Florida, hospital, to continue with his treatment told a friend recently that: “I was relieved of my job after I was diagnosed with cancer. My wife died of breast cancer three years ago and when she was diagnosed with breast cancer I spent all the money

“I made playing professional football on her medical bills to keep her treatment uninterrupted. Consequently, I had to send my three children to Nigeria because my lethal health condition.”

Agbonavbare, who was a member of Nigeria’s U-21 Mexico 1983 Flying Eagles, 1984 AFCON silver medalist and 1994 AFCON gold medalist, is calling on Nigerians to come to his aid and so did some of his teammates in the Eagles calling on the Federal Government to convert the scholarship awards promised the 1983 Flying Eagles team into financial rewards so that Wilfred’s cancer treatment continues uninterrupted. This according to them will also enable some of their colleagues in despair as a result of financial constraint to have hope.

•Agbonavbare (left)on sick bed at a Tampa hospital in Florida, USA.

•Agbonavbare (left)on sick bed at a Tampa hospital in Florida, USA.

Ex-Flying Eagles and Green Eagles star Dehinde Akinlotan said Agbonavbare needs urgent help now, adding that “Mr. Agbonavbare is plagued with serious sickness at a hospital bed as we speak seeking financial support and also fighting for his life, we are hoping that our plea to Mr. President in redeeming the pledge bestowed on the team. We had already lost three of our teammates (Ali Jeje, Chris Anigala and Tarfa Kpako) to illness during our plea and we pray that almighty God will be with and give Agbonavbare good and sound health.”

“It’s unfortunate that one of us is at the point of death struggling to pay hospital his medical bills and if our government redeems this scholarship it will help to save his life. I am talking about Wilfred Agbonavbare. We are also asking FG or FA to find a way to put together a retirement plan so players have something to fall back on upon retirement from active football,” said Tajudeen Disu, a former defender in the Eagles.

Femi Olukanni, who played at the 1983 FIFA U-20 World Cup Final said: “The current health condition of Agbonavbare on sick bed deeply concerns us greatly because of the request from good-hearted friends to ask for prayers and financial support on his behalf. We do believe that if this scholarship is converted to financial rewards, Wilfred’s treatment will not be interrupted, and this is the collective hope we come to you with.”

Vice captain of the 1983 Flying Eagles set, US based Chief Paul Okoku said he was sad about the news of Agbonavbare’s woes.

“When I read that our former teammate, Agbonavbare, is terminally ill, it saddened my heart because the last time I saw him, he was a vibrant young man, full of life ahead of him. And his look on the sick bed sent a chill through my spine which resonated deep on my emotion.

“We, the 1983 set of Flying Eagles players, are calling on President Goodluck Jonathan, as the promise keeper, to honour the promised scholarship the then President Shehu Shagari, made to us in 1983 after qualifying Nigeria for her first ever FIFA-organized tournament. In doing so, Wilfred, who is terminally ill, will not be in want financially and he can focus on his treatment with peace of mind. And equally, many of our teammates in despair, struggling to make ends meet financially and suffering from deplorable health conditions with no medical assistance will have hope,” said Okoku, former Eagles’ midfielder who established Greater Tomorrow Children Foundation (GTCF) to help the less-privileged children in the Nigerian society.

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Bosso Signs New Deal At Abia Warriors http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/28/bosso-signs-new-deal-at-abia-warriors/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/28/bosso-signs-new-deal-at-abia-warriors/#comments Fri, 28 Nov 2014 05:00:31 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=221021 Chairman Abia Warriors Chief Emeka Inyama, left, with Coach Ladan Bosso after the contract signing on Thursday

Chairman Abia Warriors Chief Emeka Inyama, left, with Coach Ladan Bosso after the contract signing on Thursday

Former Flying Eagles coach, Issa Ladan Bosso, has officially extended his contract with Umuahia-based Abia Warriors Football Club for another season as the club’s Technical Adviser.

Speaking at the signing ceremony at the club’s secretariat in Umuahia on Thursday, Chairman of Abia Warriors FC, Chief Emeka Inyama said the board and management were satisfied with Bosso’s performance in his first season with the club and decided to renew his contract for the sake of continuity.

According to him, the club placed 7th at the end of the season with 58 points, became the only team to win three away matches and scored 51 goals which was only bettered by three-time champions, Kano Pillars who had 57. He described this performance as massive.

He said Bosso will still work with all his backroom staff which have been left intact for the forthcoming season, describing Abia Warriors as one of the three best managed clubsides in Nigeria as the club is run with international standards.

Chairman of Abia Warrior, Emeka Inyama, left, with Coach Ladan Bosso sigining necessary papers for an extended deal

Chairman of Abia Warrior, Emeka Inyama, left, with Coach Ladan Bosso sigining necessary papers for an extended deal

Chief Inyama, who promised that the management will continue to support the technical crew, expressed confidence that the club will consolidate on its achievements in the forthcoming season and commended Governor T.A. Orji for his financial and moral support to the team.

In his speech, after putting pen to paper to handle the premier League outfit for yet another season, Ladan Bosso, who has been highly itinerant in the domestic scene, said he decided to remain with Abia Warriors not for pecuniary reasons but to pay back for the love and support the people gave him in his first season through an improved performance.

The former Niger Tornadoes, Wikki Tourists, Kano Pillars and Bayelsa United’s tactician said he was satisfied with the way Abia Warriors is run and will contribute his quota in making the club a household name in Nigerian Football.

Bosso lamented that despite winning unassailable three away games during the season, Abia Warriors could not still hit the continent and attributed this to ill-luck and some other human errors which will be corrected next season.

“We will work together again with the management to achieve better results next season,” Bosso promised and commended the management for retaining his backroom staff.

The Niger State-born coach revealed that some players who did not live up to his expectations will be shown the exit door, while more energetic and young players have been penciled down to strengthen identified areas of need, assuring that no Abia Warriors player of note will be snatched by other clubs.

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Enyimba Wins 2014 Federation Cup http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/23/enyimba-wins-2014-federation-cup/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/23/enyimba-wins-2014-federation-cup/#comments Sun, 23 Nov 2014 18:59:06 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=220602 Taiwo Adelu


Enyimba Football Club of Aba beat Dolphins of Port Harcourt 2-1 to lift the 2014 edition of the Federation Cup in an epic final played at the mainbowl of Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, Lagos on Sunday.

Enyimba’s two goals were scored by Mfon Udoh in the 52nd minute and Chinonso Okonkwo in the 73rd minute of the second half.

Dolphins could only salvage a consolatory goal when Emem Udouk halved the deficit in the 80th minute, as he latched onto an Isiaka Olawale’s pass and slided home the goal for the Port Harcourt team.

Captain of the victorious Enyimba, Chinedu described the performance of his team as great, adding that they were so glad to have won the Federation Cup.
Dolphins’ lone goal scorer and the player who scored 23 goals in the Nigeria League, Eduok said his team loss due to the failure of the players to covert many begging chances to goals.

Eduok was however awarded the Most Valuable Player, MVP, award of the match.

Meanwhile, Rivers Angels of Port Harcourt beat Sunshine Queens of Akure 2-0 in the women’s final.

The host, Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola, in company of the President of Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, Amaju Pinnick, presented the Federation Cup trophy to the captain of the new champions, Odoji, who presented it to the chairman of the club, Anyansi Agwu.

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FIFA Congratulates Glo League Champions, Kano Pillars http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/07/fifa-congratulates-glo-league-champions-kano-pillars/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/07/fifa-congratulates-glo-league-champions-kano-pillars/#comments Fri, 07 Nov 2014 06:28:12 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=218784 FIFA President Sepp Blatter

FIFA President Sepp Blatter

World football-governing body, FIFA has kept its pledge of monitoring intensely events in Nigeria football, as the body on Thursday congratulated newly-crowned Nigeria Premier League champions, Kano Pillars.

In a letter addressed to NFF President, Mr. Amaju Pinnick and personally signed by FIFA President, Mr. Joseph S. Blatter, FIFA commended the entire Kano Pillars family for a job well done and also highlighted the capacity of football to transform societies.

“I know that behind this success are the belief and effort of everyone involved. This is a true team victory, and all of you deserve to share in the accolades: the players and coach of course, but also the technical and medical staff, and not least, the loyal fans. The dynamism and commitment of the Kano Pillars team have enabled them to win this title for the 3rd time in succession.

“Football is proving more than ever that it can transcend traditional boundaries to become a real driver of development. It enables players at all levels to develop their individual skills, tactical understanding and personal dynamism, all the while strengthening team spirit.

“Football is truly a school for life and I am convinced that everyone, and in particular the young people of today, can benefit from playing football on both a social and personal level.

That is why I urge them all in Kano Pillars to continue their work, leading the way on this path of success. Football is helping to build a better future and I wish to thank Kano Pillars for playing a part in this.”

Pillars earned their third straight Nigerian title, with one game to play, after defeating Nembe City 4-0 in Kano in one of the matches played last weekend in the Globacom sponsored. League.

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Uyo Stadium Opening: Eagles Begin Camping Today http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/03/uyo-stadium-opening-eagles-begin-camping-today/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/03/uyo-stadium-opening-eagles-begin-camping-today/#comments Mon, 03 Nov 2014 13:37:06 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=218324 Players of the home-based Super Eagles have been told to report to Uyo, Akwa Ibom today as they begin preparation for an international friendly match for the opening ceremony of the new Akwa Ibom International Stadium, Uyo on Friday.

Uyo stadium

Uyo stadium

The players, called up by Head Coach Stephen Keshi, are to report at the Le Meridien Hotel, Uyo today. They will be led to Uyo by Gombe United goalkeeper, Chigozie Agbim with other 23 local players called up to face home-based Ghana team, the Black Stars.

Coach Stephen Keshi has also called up Emem Eduok and Mfon Udoh, who at the weekend broke goals record of the Nigerian professional Football League, NPFL with 21 goals for Enyimba in the current season. Also called are Gbolahan Salami, Rabiu Ali, Christian Pyagbara, Bright Esieme, Umar Zango, Solomon Kwambe and Azubuike Egwuekwe in a 24 –man squad.

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Kano Pillars win third consecutive league title http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/02/kano-pillars-win-third-consecutive-league-title/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2014/11/02/kano-pillars-win-third-consecutive-league-title/#comments Sun, 02 Nov 2014 20:57:39 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=218288 Kano Pillars

Kano Pillars FC on Sunday thrashed Nembe City 4-0 at the Sani Abacha stadium, Kano to win the 2013/2014 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL).

NAN reports that Kano Pillars won the Nigeria Premier League title for the third time in a row, having won the 2011/2012 and 2012/2013 NPFL seasons.

With one more match left to play, Pillars have an unassailable lead at the top following Dolphins 1-1 draw with Enyimba FC in Port Harcourt on Sunday.

The Champions piled an early pressure on the relegation-bound Nembe City side, but it was not until the 23rd minute that they got the opener.

Home-based Super Eagles striker, Gambo Mohammmed, back in the team after a minor injury took advantage of some slack defending from Nembe City to head home a Promise James delivery.

Seven minutes later another James pin point delivery was half cleared by Chijioke Umeonaku dropping nicely for Azeez Shobowale who scored to put the champions two nil up.

Nembe City managed only one shot on target before the half time whistle was sounded.

Eight minutes after the restart, Theophilus Allison wasted Nembe’s best chance to pull a goal back by failing to hit the net with goalkeeper Theophilus Affelokhai at his mercy.

Nembe’s missed opportunities came to haunt them in the 63rd minute when Adamu Hassan scrambled home a third for Kano Pillars as Nembe’s defence failed to deal with a ball in their box.

Three minutes later Shobowale got his brace and his Pillars’ fourth with a clever chip over goalkeeper Ifeanyi Agu before slamming the ball into the empty net.

Kano Pillars stroke the ball around to run the clock down and secure all three points.

NAN also reports that table-toppers, Kano Pillars are on 65 points, while Enyimba are second with 61 points and Warri Wolves with 60 points occupy the third position on the NPFL 20-team table.

Meanwhile, Nembe City, Crown FC of Osogbo and Kaduna United are heading for relegation to the Nigeria National League (NNL).

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