P.M. NEWS Nigeria » Nigerian Football Teams http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com First with Nigeria News - Nigerian leading evening Newspaper - Mon, 17 Aug 2015 14:15:18 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 U-17 World Cup Camping: Eaglets relocate to Katsina http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/15/u-17-world-cup-camping-eaglets-relocate-to-katsina-2/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/15/u-17-world-cup-camping-eaglets-relocate-to-katsina-2/#comments Sat, 15 Aug 2015 16:01:01 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=249978 Emmanuel Amuneke

Emmanuel Amuneke

Nigeria’s U-17 side, Golden Eaglets on Saturday, relocated to Katsina from Abuja for their closed-camping ahead of the Chile 2015 FIFA Under -17 World Cup.

Eaglets’ Head Coach, Emmanuel Amuneke who led a team of 35 players and eight officials to the Northwestern state thanked the management and staff of Serob Legacy Hotel even as he called on the players to remain focused.

“We want to thank you all for making our stay here pleasurable,” Amuneke told the staff at breakfast.

“But we have to leave now for Katsina to continue our preparation. By the Grace of God, we would meet again and have cause to celebrate what God is going to do for us,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Golden Eaglets according to Team Administrator, Tayo Egbaiyelo who attended a recent FIFA U-17 World Cup workshop conducted by FIFA in Santiago, would be accommodated at Doubletree by Hilton for the first game against USA; Sheraton Miramar Hotel & Convention Centre in Vina del Mar for the match against Chile and at Coquimbo Hotel De La Hahia for the match against Croatia.

The Golden Eaglets before their departure to Katsina, maintained their goal scoring form in practice matches with 7-0 thrashing of Nwauudo Foundation FC Academy of Gboko on Tuesday and 3-0 defeat of Santos Academy of Abuja on Friday.

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Tijani Babangida assumes duty as Oliseh’s SA http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/13/tijani-babangida-assumes-duty-as-olisehs-sa/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/13/tijani-babangida-assumes-duty-as-olisehs-sa/#comments Thu, 13 Aug 2015 19:22:23 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=249699 Tijani Babangida

Tijani Babangida

Tijani Babangida, a former Super Eagles player, on Thursday in Abuja assumed duty as a Special Adviser on Technical Matters to Super Eagles’ Head Coach Sunday Oliseh.

NAN reports that Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) had last week announced Babangida as an adviser to Oliseh, with whom he has a long-standing relationship.

Babangida who was at the NFF secretariat on Thursday to collect his appointment letter told newsmen that he would justify the confidence reposed in him by the NFF.

He said he would do this through positive pieces of advice to build a new Super Eagles.

“To work with Oliseh or to serve him is one great thing, because we understand each other a lot. We also have the trust of each other, dating back to our playing days.

“For you to understand the level of trust we have for each other, anything I discuss with Oliseh cannot be discussed with anybody.

“This is what the NFF saw and they decided to appoint me to guide him in one way or the other, so that he can work well as the Super Eagles coach,” Babangida said.

The former wing forward who was Chairman of FC Taraba, a Premier League clubside, said he was mandated by Oliseh to be in Abuja latest by Monday.

He said this was for them to meet and strategise on the team’s forthcoming Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) qualifier against Tanzania in September.

“Oliseh told me to be in Abuja when the team’s camp opens on Monday, so that he can present all the members of his crew to the players.

“I am waiting for Oliseh to be in town to be able to sit with him, talk with him and line up my schedule.

“Lining up my schedule means what I will do and what I am not supposed to do,” the former player of Ajax Amsterdam FC of Netherlands said.

He disclosed that he would be paid allowances for the job, pointing out however that his major concern was to see the Eagles succeed as a team.

Babangida said he would consequently be operating as a consultant to FC Taraba, rather than in the role of Chairman he was in at the clubside before his latest appointment.

He said this was to enable him carry out his new assignment diligently and without interference and distractions.

“A new chairman will now be appointed for FC Taraba, even though I will be coming in at the Super Eagles only when there is a national assignment. But I will be working as a consultant for FC Taraba from a distance.”

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Glo League Governing Body Tasks Nigerian Companies http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/13/glo-league-governing-body-tasks-nigerian-companies/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/13/glo-league-governing-body-tasks-nigerian-companies/#comments Thu, 13 Aug 2015 12:31:43 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=249602 The body overseeing the Globacom sponsored Nigeria Football Professional League, NPFL, the League Management Company, LMC, says it intends to work with the Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, and the National Sports Commission, NSC, to push for a law to compel Nigerian companies entering into sponsorship deals with European clubs to pay some percentage of the net worth of the deals to the domestic league.

This, it said, is to curb capital flight from the nation’s football industry and improve the local league significantly.

Chairman of LMC, Mallam Shehu Dikko disclosed this at the inaugural sportspro.ng/Lagos Business School workshops which held at the Pan Atlantic University on Tuesday and also re-echoed the LMC’s position at the recent World Leagues Forum inaugural meeting in London.

Dikko sought a percentage of European Leagues’ broadcast and other commercial partnerships deals secured from Nigerian organizations for the airing of live games and other activations in the territory.

Glo Premier League Logo

Glo Premier League Logo

He lamented that investable funds that would have accelerated the development of football in the country are being channeled to foreign leagues/club deals while the domestic league and clubs are left to struggle.

“Our biggest challenge is the struggle for the hearts of our fans and the proliferation of European football on television and promotion of foreign clubs’ contents by Nigerian companies. The intrusion of these broadcasts has made it more expensive to go to the stadium as just about N50 can get the average fan into a viewing centre to see the foreign league and we are saying they should pay development grants in form of solidarity payments to us as they do to the lower leagues in their country,” argued the LMC boss.

His position was supported by three Guest Speakers: Dr. Jim Pulcrano, a visiting Professor and member of EMBA Teaching Team; Mr. Kelvin Roberts, Editorial Director, Sports Business Group and Robert Matsauki, former Technical Director of Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa, ANOCA.

Roberts acknowledged that European football is devastating the development of football in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, saying “the position of the LMC is reasonable and it is something that could be put on the table and negotiated but it is also important that you identify opportunities in the industry and utilize them.”

Eight NPFL club officials and some staff of the LMC participated in the workshop which was moderated by Dikko.

He said that continuous training and capacity development for stakeholders in the league is a deliberate policy to ensure that everyone is on the same page in the reforms initiated since 2013 to improve the league.

The clubs’ officials in attendance were Davidson Owumi of Warri Wolves, Jude Anyadufu of Enyimba, Akin Akinbobola of Sunshine Stars and Rasheed Balogun of Shooting Stars.

Others are Tijani Babangida of FC Taraba, Sammy Adesoji of Giwa FC, Alhaji Kabiru Baita of Kano Pillars and the acting Secretary of Club Owners and Managers Forum, Alloy Chukwuemeka.

From the LMC were Harry Iwuala, Head of Special Projects and Kelvin Omuojine of the LMC Compliance and Regulations Unit.

“We are committed to equipping the clubs with the necessary resource capacity to achieve resonance with our vision to improve the league in terms of performance on the pitch and off pitch including the financials. This is why we considered it necessary to sponsor some of the club officials to share ideas at an international forum such as we just had at the Lagos Business School,” explained Dikko.

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26 years after, NFF hails Samuel Okwaraji as a patriot http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/11/26-years-after-nff-hails-samuel-okwaraji-as-a-patriot/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/11/26-years-after-nff-hails-samuel-okwaraji-as-a-patriot/#comments Tue, 11 Aug 2015 20:07:21 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=249385 President of Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, Amaju Pinnick has praised the patriotism and professionalism of Samuel Sochukwuma Okwaraji, who died on August 12, 1989 while playing for the Senior National Team in a 1990 FIFA World Cup qualifying match against Angola at the National Stadium, Lagos.

On the eve of the 26th anniversary of the unfortunate incident that saw one of the brightest midfielders in Nigeria football history die of cardiac attack, Pinnick put a call through to Lady Jane Okwaraji, Samuel’s mother who lives in Owerri.

“Mama, there is nothing I can say other than to tell you to continue to take solace in the fact that Sochukwuma was a star for Nigeria, a name that no one has been able to forget no matter how much they tried. He was the quintessential professional and patriot per excellence.

“Please be rest assured that Sochukwuma will continue to be in our hearts and consciousness. He was a rare gem. I assure you that the NFF will continue to keep in touch with you.”

Pinnick recalled that as a young boy, he was at the National Stadium to watch the big match only to go home with a heavy heart after news broke of Okwaraji’s tragic departure.

Late Samuel Okwaraji

Late Samuel Okwaraji

“It was a horrible day, for someone like me and several other Nigerians who were right inside the National Stadium, Lagos that day. By all accounts, Sam Okwaraji was a consummate professional and was a shining example of patriotic fervor.”

NFF General Secretary, Dr. Mohammed Sanusi was also one of the scores of thousands of fans at the National Stadium, Lagos that fateful day.

Sanusi said: “That was a day better –forgotten. We lost one of the most dedicated and committed players to have featured for any of the National Teams.”

A doctorate degree student of law, Okwaraji slumped under his own weight 13 minutes to the end of the match and was confirmed dead on arrival at the hospital.

Patrick Okwaraji, Samuel’s brother, said after the phone call by the NFF President. “We are grateful to the NFF President for his phone call. At least, Mama is feeling better now.”

On Wednesday, the portrait of the late midfielder would be displayed round the eight venues of the Federation Cup quarter –finals in remembrance of him: Enugu, Benin City, Neros Stadium, Oleh, Lokoja, Abuja, Ilorin and Makurdi.

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Fed Cup: Oseghale, Clement Chase Obong For Top Scorer Prize http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/11/fed-cup-oseghale-clement-chase-obong-for-top-scorer-prize/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/11/fed-cup-oseghale-clement-chase-obong-for-top-scorer-prize/#comments Tue, 11 Aug 2015 14:43:46 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=249334 The race for the top scorer in both men’s and women’s competitions of the 2015 Federation Cup begins on Wednesday when the quarter final games hold at eight centres.

In the men’s event, Friday Obong of Akwa United FC of Uyo leads with five goals.

He scored three of those goals in the Round of 64 against Dallatu FC, and two more in the Round of 32 match against Peacemakers FC.

Three other players have scored three goals each in this year’s men’s Federation Cup. They are Bobby Clement of Enugu Rangers, Junior Oseghale of BJ Foundation and Chinedu Iheanacho of FC Taraba. However, FC Taraba has been eliminated.

Oseghale scored one goal each against Kurmi Market (Round of 64), Sportlight FC (Round of 32) and Heartland FC (Round of 16). Clement netted two in Rangers’ clash with Kukuruku Dragons in the Round of 32 and another one against Kwara United in the Round of 16.

Iheanacho bagged a brace for FC Taraba against Akpamkpa (Round of 64) and one against Papilo in the Round of 32.

federation cup

federation cup

Obong, Clement and Oseghale have opportunity to increase their tally when the quarter -final games are played on Wednesday.

Obong’s Akwa United clash with Niger Tornadoes Feeders in Makurdi, while Oseghale’s BJ Foundation tackle Lobi Stars at the Confluence Stadium, Lokoja.

Clement’s Rangers will battle El-Kanemi Warriors at the FIFA Goal Project, Abuja.

In the women’s Federation Cup, Tina Oyeleme of Sunshine Queens has three goals, while Ijeoma Emenike (Rivers Angels) and Rafiyat Sule (Bayelsa Queens) have two each.

All matches will be played on Wednesday.

Federation Cup Quarter Final Fixtures (MEN)

Lobi Stars Vs BJ Foundation (Lokoja) – 3pm

El-Kanemi Warriors Vs Enugu Rangers (Abuja) – 3pm

Nassarawa United Vs FC IfeanyiUbah (Ilorin) – 3pm

Akwa United Vs Tornadoes Feeders (Makurdi) – 3pm

Federation Cup Quarter Final Fixtures (WOMEN)

Rivers Angels Vs Confluence Queens (Enugu) – 3pm

Edo Queens Vs Bayelsa Queens (Neros) – 3pm

Osun Queens Vs Nasarawa Amazons (Benin) – 3pm

FC Robo Vs Sunshine Queens (Oleh) – 3pm

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Nigeria, England battle for Liverpool’s Jordan Ibe http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/06/nigeria-england-battle-for-liverpools-jordan-ibe/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/06/nigeria-england-battle-for-liverpools-jordan-ibe/#comments Thu, 06 Aug 2015 06:34:53 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=248694 Jordan Ibe

Jordan Ibe

Nigeria have made an attempt to convince Jordon Ibe to pledge his international future to them.

The Liverpool winger is well-regarded by the Football Association. He has played at all levels up to Under 20 and it is highly likely that he will figure in Gareth Southgate’s Under 21 squad at some point during the next European Championship qualification campaign.

But he is also eligible to play for the Super Eagles through his father and Nigeria coach Sunday Oliseh visited Melwood, Liverpool’s training ground, in an attempt to woo Ibe.

It is the second time this year that Nigeria have stated their ambitions, with Viktor Ikpeba – a member of the Nigerian FA’s technical committee – saying in February that they were looking at the 19-year-old.

Ibe wants to add his name to the scoresheet more often after establishing himself as a key member of Brendan Rodgers’ Liverpool squad.

The 19-year-old netted a stunning equaliser in a pre-season friendly against a Malaysia XI last month and impressed during the Reds’ tour of the Far East and Australia.

But after failing to hit the back of the net in 12 Premier League appearances last term, Ibe believes he can score – or provide assists – more regularly in the coming campaign.

“I’m not completely satisfied because I need to keep working on a few things, like my end product – getting the ball and finding someone in the box and trying to add a few more goals to my game,’ he told club website liverpoolfc.com.

“I’m quite self-critical. I like to think about things after a game – things I could have improved on, like maybe having taken a shot on or something.”

Culled from Mail Online

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Nigerian league grants provisional approval to suspended stadia http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/01/nigerian-league-grants-provisional-approval-to-suspended-stadia/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/01/nigerian-league-grants-provisional-approval-to-suspended-stadia/#comments Sat, 01 Aug 2015 13:41:28 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=248121 NPL

Six cubs whose grounds were decertified from hosting Glo Premier League matches have been granted provisional approval by the League Management Company (LMC) to return to their grounds while further inspection would be carried out to ascertain the appropriateness of repairs done.

In a circular to the Clubs, the LMC listed the clubs that have been granted provisional approval to return to their home grounds as Giwa FC (Rwang Pam Stadium, Jos), Nasarawa United, (Lafia Township Stadium), FC Taraba (Jolly Nyame Stadium, Jalingo), Heartland (Dan Anyiam Stadium, Owerri), FC IfeanyiUbah (Gabros Stadium, Nnewi) and Abia Warriors (Umuahia Township Stadium).

The clubs had their grounds decertified from Match Day 11 after they were inspected and adjudged not fit to host Glo Premier League matches. The clubs were directed to repair the observed defects and notify the LMC for further inspection.

The LMC in the circular said it has received and reviewed the preliminary reports from field inspections which shows that there has been appreciable level of improvement towards meeting the required standard required for top level league football. It further said: “Consequently, the following Clubs are hereby given the provisional approval and option to use their home venues for a trial period in the next four matches”.

The circular signed by the LMC Chief Operating Officer, Salihu Abubakar informed the affected clubs that final inspection will be carried out on each stadium during match days to determine the correctness of the repairs on the pitches and compliance to continue to host matches.

“Those we find to have met requirements for certification will be approved to continue hosting matches for the rest of the season while any venue found not to have complied to standard will be decertified indefinitely and the club will return to the alternative venue from Match Day 24″, the LMC declared in the circular.

It further stated that the listed clubs can exercise the option of continuing to play their home games at their adopted grounds if they so desire, but must confirm such decision in writing to the LMC before close of business on Friday, July 31.

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Olympic Qualifier: Nigeria’s Super Falcons hold first training in Bata http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/01/olympic-qualifier-nigerias-super-falcons-hold-first-training-in-bata/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/08/01/olympic-qualifier-nigerias-super-falcons-hold-first-training-in-bata/#comments Sat, 01 Aug 2015 08:39:33 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=248085 Super Falcons during a training session

Super Falcons during a training session

Ngeria senior women’s team arrived in Bata, mainland Equatorial Guinea on Friday morning, and after catching up with some rest, had a light training session at a venue not far from the team hotel.

Led by NFF Executive Committee members Ibrahim Gusau and Dilichukwu Onyedinma, the delegation arrived in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea’s administrative capital on Thursday night, and slept there before proceeding to Bata on Friday morning.

“The Equatorial Guinea FA officials have been behaving funny, but we expected that. They have been trying to frustrate our team,” said NFF official Tunde Aderibigbe, who is on the delegation.

NFF protocol official Barnabas Joro added: “The FA sent only one member of their staff to receive us at the airport in Bata, and since then, we have not seen them.

“We need information on the match coordination meeting, tickets for members of the Nigeria community here and so on. But they are nowhere to be found. Even when we went to the FA office in Bata on Friday afternoon, the place was locked.

“It was through our own efforts and that of the staff of the Embassy of Nigeria, who have remained with us, that we were able to get somewhere for the team to train.”

However, it is expected that the Super Falcons will be allowed to have the official training at the match venue – Stade Nkoatoma de Bata – on Saturday evening by 4pm.

The Nigerian ladies are to play their Equatorial Guinea counterparts in the second keg of the final round of the 2016 Olympic qualifiers on Sunday.

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Olympic Qualifier: Nigeria’ll beat Congo, Siasia boasts http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/30/olympic-qualifier-nigeriall-beat-congo-siasia-boasts/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/30/olympic-qualifier-nigeriall-beat-congo-siasia-boasts/#comments Thu, 30 Jul 2015 18:30:41 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=247840 Samson Siasia: coach of Dream Team VI

Samson Siasia: coach of Dream Team VI

Nigeria U-23 team’s Head Coach, Samson Siasia has expressed confidence his boys will come out of the cauldron of Pointe Noire in flying colours after Sunday’s potentially–explosive 2015 African U-23 Championship final qualifying match.

A slim 2-1 advantage from the first leg in Port Harcourt means a battle is at hand, in a Congo-Brazzaville reputed for all manner of tactics against every visiting team.

Yet, Siasia is unfazed as he announced just before the team’s departure on Thursday that he relishes big games.

“I love big games, and I’m not shy to say so. This is with every sense of modesty. Pointe Noire is another tough session, but I look forward to it.”

Siasia was in charge of the Nigeria U-23 team that also to negotiate tough runs to the Men’s Football Tournament of the 2008 Olympics. On November 16, 2007, the team needed at least a draw against Ghana in Accra to be in good stead for the ticket, and duly played out a 0-0 draw. Siasia’s boys completed the job with a 3-0 win over South Africa in Abuja in March 2008.

Although Siasia’s team lost the Olympics gold to Argentina in Beijing, the former Eagles’ skipper was in charge when the Super Eagles achieved a first –ever win over the Argentines – a 4-1 win in a friendly in Abuja on June 1, 2011.

The former star forward was also in charge of the Nigeria U-20 team that won silver at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in The Netherlands in 2005.

Recently, Siasia’s U-23 boys won both away matches on the road to qualifying for the 11th All-Africa Games football tournament – a 4-1 win over Gabon in Libreville and 2-1 defeat of Zambia in Lusaka.

“It will not be easy; nothing good in life comes easy. But we will give it our very best shot and return from Pointe Noire with victory.”

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Federation Cup: Abuja, Minna, Oshogbo, Oleh On Fire http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/21/federation-cup-abuja-minna-oshogbo-oleh-on-fire/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/21/federation-cup-abuja-minna-oshogbo-oleh-on-fire/#comments Tue, 21 Jul 2015 16:17:26 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246803 The Round of 16 matches of this year’s men’s Federation Cup competition will take place across the country on Wednesday, with only one match on Thursday.

On Wednesday, FC Ifeanyi Ubah, victors over fellow Glo Premier League side, Bayelsa United in the Round of 32, will be up against FC Taraba, winners against Papilo FC, at the Area 3 Playground in Abuja.

The same venue will 24 hours later, welcome two other Glo Premier League clubs, Kwara United and Enugu Rangers, in what is perhaps the most anticipated game of the Round of 16.

The other all –top division clash, between Nasarawa United and Abia Warriors, is scheduled for the Oshogbo Township Stadium on Wednesday.

federation cup

federation cup

The Rojenny Stadium, Oba will play host to the clash between Remo Stars of Ogun State, who eliminated champions Enyimba FC and Glo NPFL side, Lobi Stars. In Makurdi, Heartland FC will battle BJ Foundation from Edo State, which eliminated Sportlight FC of Kaduna in the Round of 32.

Akwa United will see themselves as favourites against Prime FC at Oleh Township Stadium, and El-Kanemi Warriors take the battle to giant –killing Plateau United, which claimed the scalps of both Shooting Stars and Kano Pillars. Their match comes up at the Bako Kontagora Stadium, Minna.

MEN’S FEDERATION CUP (ROUND OF 16)

Remo Stars Vs Lobi Stars – (Rojenny) – 22/07/2015 (3pm)

Heartland FC Vs BJ Foundation – (Makurdi) – 22/07/2015 (3pm)

Plateau United Vs El-Kanemi Warriors – (Minna) – 22/07/2015 (3pm)

Nasarawa United Vs Abia Warriors – (Oshogbo) -22/07/2015 (3pm)

FC IfeanyiUbah Vs FC Taraba – (Abuja) – 22/07/2015 (3pm)

Prime FC Vs Akwa United – (Oleh) – 22/07/2015 (3pm)

Tornadoes Feeders Vs Dolphins FC- (Ado Ekiti) – 22/07/2015 (3pm)

Kwara United Vs Enugu Rangers – (Abuja) – 23/07/2015 (3pm)

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NFF dreams FIFA World Cup for Nigeria http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/20/nff-dreams-fifa-world-cup-for-nigeria/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/20/nff-dreams-fifa-world-cup-for-nigeria/#comments Mon, 20 Jul 2015 15:44:26 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246721 Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi

Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi

The 1st Vice President of Nigeria Football Federation, Barr. Seyi Akinwunmi has reiterated that the plan of the present NFF Board and Management is to win the FIFA World Cup for Nigeria.

Akinwunmi said in Port Harcourt while addressing players and officials of the U-23 National Team, Dream Team, after its 2-1 victory over Congo in an African U-23 Championship qualifying game.

He said the NFF is proud with the display put up by the boys against Congo as this is what many Nigerians have been yearning for, and from what the boys have shown, they are at the verge of playing for the Super Eagles.

“Even though we should have beaten the Congolese by a wider margin, the NFF is happy with your display. I am sure that you players and the coaches also feel that you should have won by a wider margin. Nonetheless, you have made us proud, you have made us proud not with the scoreline but with the football
you played.

“A lot of Nigerians have been calling on television and the radio thanking us that we have shown Nigerians that we have footballers who are committed to winning a football match‎, and that is commendable because we believe that one day very soon, Nigeria can win the FIFA World Cup. In fact the plan of the present NFF is to win the FIFA World Cup. What has been lacking much of the time has been the passion for the badge on your chest.”

Akinwunmi said the players should at all times remember that there are millions of Nigerians who pray and fast for the team to win a match and as such they must realise that they carry the passion of millions of Nigerians. Challenging the boys to go to Congo and outscore the Devils so as to make sure of a place at the 2nd African U-23 Championship, the 1st Vice President commended the players for the high level of discipline.

Also speaking at the same reception, the NFF’s 2nd Vice President, Mr. Shehu Dikko said the boys have shown that they are the future of Nigeria football, adding that its not always all about winning, but about the future‎.

Assuring the boys that the Federation will do give every support to make the team soar in Congo and all the way to the All-Africa Games, the African U-23 Championship and next year’s Olympics, Dikko then urged the players to take advantage of the elite player program, that will help the players to keep fit and stay in shape.

“As for the league we have the program that’s called the elite player program, so any player who is not playing in the league and who wants to play in the league at least to keep in shape, you can come to us in the LMC, we can get you a club, we will pay you to play for a club‎ and you don’t have to be contracted to the club.”

He added that it is the best way to go for the players to keep playing day in, day out before they secure contracts abroad.

Responding, the captain of the side, Azubuike Okechukwu thanked the NFF for their support and on behalf of the players promised Nigerians that they will take the battle to the Congolese in Pointe Noire and do the country proud.

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Super Falcons play 1-1 against Equatorial Guinea in Abuja http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/18/super-falcons-play-1-1-against-equatorial-guinea-in-abuja/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/18/super-falcons-play-1-1-against-equatorial-guinea-in-abuja/#comments Sat, 18 Jul 2015 21:20:31 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246592 Super Falcons

The Super falcons on Saturday in Abuja struggled to a 1-1 home draw with Equatorial Guinea in the first leg match of their 2016 Olympic Games Qualifying Fixture.

In the match played at the National Stadium’s mainbowl, the Falcons really struggled to stamp their authority and put the match under control.

With the visitors always threatening through the flanks, the Falcons who were already missing the pace of Asisat Oshoala upfront were always cautious going forward.

But, after 25 minutes, Halimat Ayinde put her team in the driving seat with good shot from a good turn on the right side of the opposing penalty box.

They however failed to build on this lead, with Desire Oparanozie lacking support upfront as the Falcons looked bereft of goal scoring ideas.

When the teams returned for the second half, it was the Equatorial Guinea side that were holding the initiative as they kept the Nigerian side on the backfoot.

They soon translated their dominance to advantage, with Nigerian-born Chinasa Okoro drawing the visitors level in the 62nd minute after a defensive mix-up.

The Falcons poured forward thereafter, but they were always coming up short with the forwardline failing to break down the Equatorial Guinea defence.

Speaking after the game, stand-in Falcons coach Christopher Danjuma apologized to their fans and other Nigerians for the result.

He added however that his team was not going to be making excuses, even though they were encumbered by emotional problems and the absence of some players.

“We apologise for the result and the way the match went. But the team, even though we are not people who will want to be making excuses, had a number of problems.

“We were affected emotionally by what happened in our camp on Thursday, and we missed some of our best players,” Danjuma said.

On his part, coach Miguel Pozanco said his team were able to get the draw because they were a strong side and were well aware of the Falcons capabilities.

“We knew the falcons very well, and really prepared ourselves, even though we also have a good team.

“And this is why we will not take the second leg game lightly. We will not take the Falcons for granted,” he said.

NAN reports that the second leg match will come up in Malabo in two weeks’ time.

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Wike to splash dollars on U-23 team http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/18/wike-to-splash-dollars-on-u-23-team/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/18/wike-to-splash-dollars-on-u-23-team/#comments Sat, 18 Jul 2015 15:11:37 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246568 Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt

Governor Wike addressing members of the technical crew of U-23 Dream Team 6 at their training ground in Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Port Harcourt

Governor Wike addressing members of the technical crew of U-23 Dream Team 6 at their training ground in Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Port Harcourt

Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike has splashed dollars on the U-23 team (Dream Team VI) ahead of Sunday’s Olympic qualifier against Congo in Port Harcourt, southern Nigeria.

Shortly after watching the team’s training session at the 40,000 capacity Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium on Friday in Port Harcourt said they needed to win convincingly.

According to the governor, “We need to win this match and win convincingly. If you score any goal you will go with $30,000 and if you win with three goals you will go home with $100,000.”

Wike added that, “Mr President will be happy that you win this match.”

Governor Nyesom Wike taking a look at the master plan of Greater Port Harcourt during a visit to the site in Port Harcourt

Governor Nyesom Wike taking a look at the master plan of Greater Port Harcourt during a visit to the site in Port Harcourt

Wike, while assuring the team of maximum support, said the hosting of the Olympic qualifier was important for Rivers state because it will be the first time an international match will be played at the new stadium, and therefore charged them to play as a team.

He thanked the technical crew for the hard work and commitment in making sure the team is fully prepared to defeat their opponents.

Governor Wike also challenged the Captain of the team, Azubuike Okechukwu, to ensure they play as a team

Governor Wike (centre) in a group photograph with U-23 Team (Dream Team 6) after their training session in Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Port Harcourt

Governor Wike (centre) in a group photograph with U-23 Team (Dream Team 6) after their training session in Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Port Harcourt

“If for anything Rivers State will want you to win, it is this match,” he stressed, as he wished them good luck ahead of the match.

On his part, the Chief Coach of the Under-23 team and former Super Eagles striker, Sampson Siasia thanked the governor and people of Rivers State for the support and hospitality given to them since they arrived.

While assuring the governor of winning the match, he said “the boys are ready. If they calm down and play, we will score more goals. Come Sunday these boys will make Nigeria proud.”

Coach Siasia lauded the Local Organizing Committee for making sure facilities are ready, noting that already they are in good spirits ahead of the cracker on Sunday.

Earlier, Governor Wike had inspected facilities at the stadium, saying he was satisfied with the level of preparation so far.

He stated that the state cannot afford to miss this opportunity to show to the world that it can host an international match and that Rivers State is the home of hospitality in the country.

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Nigeria vs Congo: LOC assures fans of security in PH http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/17/nigeria-vs-congo-loc-assures-fans-of-security-in-ph/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/17/nigeria-vs-congo-loc-assures-fans-of-security-in-ph/#comments Fri, 17 Jul 2015 08:52:48 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246397 Samson Siasia: coach of Dream Team VI

Samson Siasia: coach of Dream Team VI

The Chairman of the Local Organizing Committee for the 2016 Olympic Qualifying match, Hon. Boma Iyaye has assured fans of the Under 23 Team (Dream Team 6) and its counterpart from Congo of maximum security.

Iyaye gave the assurance in Part Harcourt during a press briefing. He assured that Rivers State Government is determined to give their best to ensure a memorable match with all the associated drama, passion and wonderful atmosphere that could be obtainable anywhere in the world.

He explained that adequate security and logistic have been put in place for a hitch-free match while calling on all football fans to come out en masse to cheer the dream team to victory.

The Chairman reiterated determination of the administration of Governor Nyesom Wike towards sports, adding that, the governor is determined to re-launch Rivers State on the map of sports development in Nigeria.

The match which is billed to be played at the Adokiye Amiesimaka stadium on Sunday, 19 July will not attract any fees from spectators as the gate will be thrown open from 11:00 am on match day.

Iyaye explained that there will be free transportation at designated points in the city to convey fans on Sunday.

He thanked the Governor for the support given to the local organizing committee to ensure that there is adequate arrangement.

The members of the local organizing committee comprises seasoned sports administrator including Chief Adokiye Amesimaka, Sir Opunabo Inko-Tariah, Mercy Akide Udoh, Eddy Mark, Chrisyopher Green, Honour Sirawoo and Albert Chinwo.

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Adenuga praises Oliseh, says he’s right choice for Eagles Job http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/17/adenuga-praises-oliseh-says-hes-right-choice-for-eagles-job/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/17/adenuga-praises-oliseh-says-hes-right-choice-for-eagles-job/#comments Fri, 17 Jul 2015 06:51:07 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246385 L-R: Ike Oraekwuotu, Sunday Oliseh and Amaju Pinnick

L-R: Ike Oraekwuotu, Sunday Oliseh and Amaju Pinnick

The Chairman of Globacom, the official sponsor of Nigerian national teams, Dr. Mike Adenuga jr. (GCON) has praised the selection of Sunday Oliseh as Super Eagles Coach.

In his Speech at the presentation ceremony in Lagos on Thursday when the Board of the Nigeria Football Federation led by its President, Mr. Amaju Pinnick, formally presented Oliseh to Globacom, Coordinator Business Solutions of the company, Mr. Ike Oraekwuotu, stated that Dr. Adenuga heavily supported the choice of Sunday Oliseh, adding that he is the right choice.

“We are proud of his pedigree and we wish Oliseh and the NFF the very best in their effort to re-position Nigerian football and restore its honour and glory,” said Dr. Adenuga in a statement delivered on his behalf at the presentation.

Dr. Adenuga commended the Board of Nigeria Football Federation under the leadership of Mr. Pinnick for the choice of Oliseh which has been widely celebrated across the country as a round peg in a round hole.

He assured the Nigerian Football community, particularly the Nigerian Football Federation and the League Management Company of Globacom’s total commitment to the development of Nigerian football.

“We also wish to assure you all of Globacom’s irrevocable commitment to the continued support of Nigerian football,” Mr. Oraekwuotu concluded.

In his Speech at the event, President of Nigeria Football Federation, Mr. Pinnick, described Globacom as an African brand that has made Nigeria proud, adding that the Chairman of the company, Dr. Adenuga is the pride of Africa.

He stated that NFF appreciates what Glo has done for Nigerian football, noting that the primary objective of the NFF Board is to build sustainable football development in Nigeria.

He re-assured Globacom that the company’s investment in Nigerian football will not be in vain, stressing that, “We will get result in the coming years and our football we be back on track.”

On his part, Sunday Oliseh said Globacom as a global brand, has done a lot to improve Nigerian football.

He promised to build the capacity of the coaches, referees and club owners through intensive trainings which will help to produce football stars for the country.

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NFF gives Oliseh 3 months salary in advance worth N15m http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/15/nff-gives-oliseh-3-months-salary-in-advance-worth-n15m/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/15/nff-gives-oliseh-3-months-salary-in-advance-worth-n15m/#comments Wed, 15 Jul 2015 18:38:28 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246272 Taiwo Adelu

L-R: President, Nigeria Football Federation, Mr.  Amaju Pinnick; new Coach Super Eagles of Nigeria Mr. Sunday Oliseh and General Secretary NFF, Mr. Mohammed Sanusi, during the inauguration of Oliseh as Super Eagles new coach in Abuja on Wednesday

L-R: President, Nigeria Football Federation, Mr. Amaju Pinnick; new Coach Super Eagles of Nigeria Mr. Sunday Oliseh and General Secretary NFF, Mr. Mohammed Sanusi, during the inauguration of Oliseh as Super Eagles new coach in Abuja on Wednesday

In what appears to be a kind gesture to help the new chief coach of the Super Eagles, Sunday Oliseh to succeed, President of Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, Amaju Pinnick announced a three-month advance payment of salary to the new coach during the unveiling ceremony in Abuja today.

Apart from Oliseh, Pinnick also announced that all his assistants, Alloy Agu, Belgian Jean Francois Losciuto and Salisu Yusuf would also get three months salary in advance. This, according to the president is to show how serious the NFF wants Oliseh and his coaching crew to succeed and as a source of motivation.

This shows that without doing any work, Oliseh will be smiling to the bank with a whopping sum of N15 million as the NFF has signed a monthly package of N5m salary deal with him today.

Meanwhile, former Super Eagles’ captain, resumed life as head coach of the team on Wednesday, with a clear message to the generality of Nigerians: “I come to serve my country, not to wage a war.”

There were several questions at Wednesday’s colourful official presentation ceremony bothering on Oliseh’s perceived ‘stubbornness’, but the former captain swiftly differentiated between being principled and being stubborn.

“I have come to serve, and the NFF has promised to give me all the support I need to succeed. They are the employers and I am the employee. That distinction has to be appreciated at all times.

“I have had meetings with members of the Technical and Development Committee, led by Chief Anyansi-Agwu, very knowledgeable people all. I have met members of the Executive Committee and the General Secretary. I believe we will all work together excellently. It is a huge honour to be Head Coach of Nigeria.

“One thing I will say, dear compatriots, is that I am not a Messiah. I have come to do my very best, give 150%, to take Nigeria football to the next level, with the support of my assistants, the NFF and relevant stakeholders. I am optimistic that we will lift the Nigeria game to a new height.

“My assistants and myself will not invite to the camp of the National Team of Nigeria, any player who is not playing in the top division in the recognized Leagues of the world, including Nigeria. The only exception would be those players from any of the age-grade National Teams that we find exceptional and deserving of an opportunity to try and win shirts in the senior team,” he said.

The multi-lingual coach, who played professional football in Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany, and won Olympic football gold, Africa Cup of Nations gold, silver and bronze and played in two FIFA World Cup final competitions, signed a three-year contract with an option for an additional another year.

NFF President Amaju Pinnick presided over the event, supported by Vice Presidents Seyi Akinwunmi and Shehu Dikko, Executive Committee members Anyansi-Agwu, Yusuf Ahmed Fresh, Dilichukwu Onyedinma, Babagana Kalli and Ahmad Kawu, General Secretary Mohammed Sanusi and other members of NFF management, including Technical Director Shaibu Amodu.

The NFF leadership later presented Oliseh and his assistants to the Director General of the National Sports Commission, Mallam Al-hassan Saleh Yakmut.

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Siasia’s Eagles won’t disappoint Nigeria – Freestan Boss http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/14/siasias-eagles-wont-disappoint-nigeria-freestan-boss/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/14/siasias-eagles-wont-disappoint-nigeria-freestan-boss/#comments Tue, 14 Jul 2015 17:15:10 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246197 Efemena Elutade, President of Freenan Sports Club, Lagos

Efemena Elutade, President of Freenan Sports Club, Lagos

Nigeria’s U-23 Eagles have been tipped to do the country proud in their future engagements beginning with the African U-23 Championship final round, first leg qualifier against Congo, this Sunday in Port Harcourt.

This assurance was given by Prince Efemena Elutabe, the President of Lagos based non-league side, Freestan Sports Club.

Freestan recently played against Samson Siasia’s Dream Team in a friendly tie in Port Harcourt which the U-23 Eagles won 3-1.

Elutabe opined that the quality of the players in the national team and buoyed by the experience and astuteness of Siasia-led technical crew would certainly make the team too hot to handle for any opposition.

“Without doubt, the U-23 team are very good. I want to assure Nigerians that this team will do us proud at the All Africa Games and also qualify for the
Olympic Games,” Prince Elutabe assured.

“I have watched this team played severally, and the quality and potentials in this team are awesome,” he said.

He went ahead to enjoin every soccer fan to turn out enmasse to support the U-23 team against Congo, on Sunday.

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Pinnick: Why NFF decided to employ Oliseh http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/14/pinnick-why-nff-decided-to-employ-oliseh/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/14/pinnick-why-nff-decided-to-employ-oliseh/#comments Tue, 14 Jul 2015 16:25:21 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=246174 Taiwo Adelu

Sunday Oliseh arrives Abuja, Nigeria's capital on Tuesday

Sunday Oliseh arrives Abuja, Nigeria’s capital on Tuesday

President of Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, Amaju Pinnick has revealed the real reason his board wants Sunday Oliseh to take up the coaching job of the Super Eagles.

Pinnick said he and other members of the board were impressed with Oliseh’s plans for Nigerian football if he gets the job. According to the president, Oliseh has passion and focus on the problem of the game in the country and the solution. He added that the former Nigerian international told him that he is going to restructure the playing pattern of the Eagles as soon as he gets the job.

“When he told me about his plan to restructure the playing pattern of our football, I was so much impressed because I could remember how German football, which was then known of its ruggedness and its popular German machine status was changed to tip-tap pattern. We all saw how German football’s tip tap pattern changed the structure of that country’s football.

“I believe Oliseh’s job will go beyond handling Eagles, but he is coming to redefine our football. I can see that he is extremely passionate about what he has been telling us. He has slept over it and dreamt of it. The way he has been calling some of my technical committee members telling them of his vision for our football, I know he meant business,” Pinnick explained.

Meanwhile, Director General of National Sports Commission, NSC, Alhassan Yakmut has said that the Sports Ministry would not react officially to the planned hiring of Oliseh as Eagles’ coach as he was briefed by the leadership of NFF that talks with Oliseh are still ongoing.

“We cannot conclude and react on something which is yet to be concluded. The NFF board members met me on Monday to inform that their talks with Oliseh still ongoing and they assured that due process would be strictly followed in the process of getting a new coach for the Eagles. I believe the NSC would not act prematurely on this matter for now,” Yakmut said.

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NFF right to appoint Oliseh as Super Eagles coach, says Siasia http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/11/nff-right-to-appoint-oliseh-as-super-eagles-coach-says-siasia/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/11/nff-right-to-appoint-oliseh-as-super-eagles-coach-says-siasia/#comments Sat, 11 Jul 2015 13:44:40 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=245800 Samson Siasia

Samson Siasia

The National under-23 Team Coach, Samson Siasia, has commended the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) for hiring ex-internationals to coach the Super Eagles.

The NFF is in talks with former Super Eagles’ captain, Sunday Oliseh to coach the senior national team.

Siasia told sports journalists on Saturday in Port Harcourt, that it was a good development for the growth of the game in the country and for ex-internationals with interest and experience in coaching.

According to Siasia, Oliseh is good, I just wish him the best of luck and hopefully he would succeed.

“He should know how this terrain is, we have been there for awhile, he has been in Europe, I pray for him to cope, and you know it is not easy,” he said.

Siasia said the U-23 team was well prepared to take on Congo on July 19 at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium in Port Harcourt.

He call on Port Harcourt fans to “come out in their numbers to support the team.”

NAN

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NFF to unveil Oliseh as Super Eagles coach next week http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/10/nff-to-unveil-oliseh-as-super-eagles-coach-next-week/ http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/2015/07/10/nff-to-unveil-oliseh-as-super-eagles-coach-next-week/#comments Fri, 10 Jul 2015 18:55:09 +0000 http://www.pmnewsnigeria.com/?p=245761 Sunday Oliseh and NFF President, Amaju Pinnick

Sunday Oliseh and NFF President, Amaju Pinnick

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) will between Wednesday and Thursday next week unveil Sunday Oliseh as the new Super Eagles Chief Coach, an official said on Friday in Abuja.

Ademola Olajire, NFF’s Assistant Director of Communications, told NAN the federation had almost concluded talks with the former Super Eagles captain.

Olajire said an offer had been made to the player by the NFF and all the final details of the agreement had also been concluded.

“The only thing that is left is for the Federation to officially unveil Oliseh as Nigeria’s national team chief coach and that will be done either on Wednesday or on Thursday.

NAN recalls that the Federation had earlier in the week confirmed it was holding talks with Oliseh with regards to the vacant position at the Super Eagles.

The NFF had last weekend terminated the appointment of another former captain, Stephen Keshi, over “breaches of core terms of his contract’’.

Following the encouragement of a team of the NFF Technical and Development Committee working on filling the vacant position, Oliseh met with NFF President Amaju Pinnick in London.

NAN also recalls that the Federation said Oliseh would come with a Foreign Technical Assistant, whose job description would centre on development programmes.

It said the Foreign Technical Assistant would work with league clubs’ youth teams and certified academies towards developing the game from the grassroots.

The NFF had said coach Salisu Yusuf, who had earlier been named as the assistant coach in the interim technical crew, would be in the new team.

It however pointed out that his role would be with greater devotion to the home-based team, known as Super Eagles B.

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