FIFA COUNCIL SEAT: ORDINARY FANS ASSEMBLY CONGRATULATES PINNICK

Ordinary Fans Assembly (OFA) has joined well meaning Nigerians in congratulating the President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Mr Amaju Pinnick on winning a FIFA Executive Council Seat.

Amaju Melvin Pinnick, was on Friday in Rabat, Morocco elected into the FIFA Council, the highest decision making organ in world football.

He attained the exalted seat after defeating his only rival, incumbent Walter Nyamilandu of Malawi by 43 votes to 8 at the Congress held inside the Royal Ballroom of the Sofitel Hotel in Morocco’s administrative capital.

In a statement made available to the public by President General of OFA, Endurance Ogbemudia, he termed Amaju’s win as a big win for Nigeria and Africa at large.

He described Amaju’s case as remarkable.

“It’s a remarkable case of rapid global football boardroom upliftment for a man who, a little over six-and-half years ago, had no intention of contesting for even board membership of the Nigeria Football Federation, but has now been in the post for six-and-half years (becoming the first person to democratically secure a second term), won election as Member of the CAF Executive Committee, served as CAF’s 1st Vice President, still serving as Member of the Organizing Committee for FIFA Competitions, and now a revered member of the world’s highest decision-making organ for football” Ogbemudia said.

P. G as fondly called, Ogbemudia challenged Amaju to use his position to bring about good development to Nigerian football at large.

He also prayed to God on behalf of the NFF boss for wisdom and guidance to excel in his new position.

E-Signed
Babajide O’seyi
Secretary General OFA

Osimhen, Etebo returns as Rohr invites 24 eagles for Sierra Leone battle

Technical Adviser Gernot Rohr has called up Captain Ahmed Musa, defender William Ekong, midfield enforcer Oghenekaro Etebo and 21 others for next month’s 2022 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying quick-fire double against the Leone Stars of Sierra Leone.

Defenders Kenneth Omeruo, Leon Balogun and Chidozie Awaziem, midfielder Alex Iwobi and forwards Moses Simon, Samuel Chukwueze and Chidera Ejuke are also called.

Nigeria’s leading marksman in the series, Victor Osimhen returns after missing out of this month’s friendlies against Algeria and Tunisia, just as midfielder Joseph Ayodele-Aribo and South Africa –based goalkeeper Daniel Akpeyi.

Switzerland –based goalkeeper Sebastian Osigwe will hope to earn his first cap for Nigeria, while defenders Kevin Akpoguma and Zaidu Sanusi, who impressed in the friendlies in Austria, have been handed opportunities to add to their caps.

There are seven players on standby, including defender Abdullahi Shehu, goalkeeper Francis Uzoho, midfielders Ramon Azeez and Samson Tijani, and forward Paul Onuachu.

The Super Eagles take on the Leone Stars at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin City on Friday, 13th November before flying to Freetown for the return game on Tuesday, 17th November at the Siaka Stevens Stadium.

Players are expected to report at the Protea Hotel Emotan in Benin City on Monday, 9th November. Victory in both encounters will all but guarantee Nigeria a slot at the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations finals holding in Cameroon.

THE FULL LIST

Goalkeepers: Daniel Akpeyi (Kaizer Chiefs, South Africa); Sebastian Osigwe (FC Lugano, Switzerland); Maduka Okoye (Sparta Rotterdam, The Netherlands)

Defenders: Kenneth Omeruo (CD Leganes, Spain); Leon Balogun (Glasgow Rangers, Scotland); Chidozie Awaziem (FC Boavista, Portugal); William Ekong (Watford FC, England); Olaoluwa Aina (Fulham FC, England); Jamilu Collins (SC Padeborn 07, Germany); Oluwasemilogo Ajayi (West Bromwich Albion, England); Zaidu Sanusi (FC Porto, Portugal); Kevin Akpoguma (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim, Germany)

Midfielders: Oghenekaro Etebo (Galatasaray, Turkey); Tyronne Ebuehi (FC Twente, Netherlands); Frank Onyeka (FC Midtjylland, Denmark); Joseph Ayodele-Aribo (Glasgow Rangers, Scotland)

Forwards: Ahmed Musa (Unattached); Alex Iwobi (Everton FC, England); Emmanuel Dennis Bonaventure (Club Brugge, Belgium); Moses Simon (FC Nantes, France); Samuel Chukwueze (Villarreal FC, Spain); Victor Osimhen (Napoli FC, Italy); Kelechi Iheanacho (Leicester City, England); Chidera Ejuke (CSKA Moscow, Russia)

Standby: Francis Uzoho (APOEL Nicosia, Cyprus); Samson Tijani (TSV Hartberg, Austria); Abdullahi Shehu (Omonia Nicosia, Cyprus); Ramon Azeez (Granada CF, Spain); Kelechi Nwakali (SD Huesca, Spain); Ikechukwu Ezenwa (Heartland FC); Paul Onuachu (KRC Genk, Belgium)

NFF APPOINTS TOPMOST STRIKER, TOBECHUKWU AS MEDIA OFFICERS.

The Nigeria Football Federation has announced the appointment of Mr. Babafemi Raji also known as the Topmost striker as the new Media Officer of the Senior Men National Team, Super Eagles. He takes over from Mr. Toyin Ibitoye who has been in the post for five-and-half years.

Raji, according to the statement by the NFF media department, presently the Group Manager, Programmes and Contents in Brila Media Group, started sports journalism as a freelancer with NTA Ile-Ife between 2003 – 2006 while studying at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ife. On graduation with Bachelor of Arts in English, he joined Radio Brila, Nigeria’s first all-sport radio station in 2008. He was a member of the 2010 FIFA World Cup Media Committee set up by the tournament sponsors, and is a certified management consultant and a fellow of the Institute of Management Consultants.

Also on Tuesday, the NFF announced the appointment of Mrs Oluchi Tobe-Chukwu as the Media Officer of the Senior Women National Team, Super Falcons. She takes over from Miss Jane Onyinye Nweze.

Oluchi Tobe-Chukwu, popularly known as tobexSports, is an astute women football advocate and a writer with passion for domestic women’s league. A Federal Government scholar as the second best graduating student in mass communication at the Federal Polytechnic, Auchi, she holds a master’s degree in the same discipline from the Lagos State University. She’s a former footballer herself, having played for clubs like Hamza Queens, Flamming Flamingos and Ibom Angels before pursuing her education further.

NFF’s Director of Media and Communications, Ademola Olajire, praised Mr Ibitoye and Miss Nweze for excellent services rendered while they were with the Super Eagles and the Super Falcons respectively, and wished both of them good fortune in their future endeavours. “Mr Ibitoye and Miss Nweze were superb to work with. They demonstrated excellent people skills and acuity, and were diligent, energetic and knowledgeable. We wish them the very best in their endeavours going forward.”

MISPLACED PRIORITIES, MAJOR BANE OF THE NIGERIA FOOTBALL FEDERATION

By Ajibola Kazeem.

Why is NFF investing more time and energy on Anambra FA election when they have a more critical issues at hand to deal with?

The final standings for 2019/2020 league season is yet to be made public as adoption and application of PPG becomes a mystery and mirage in this part of the world.

One million dollars ($1m) FIFA grant is in the cooler for the NFF to share yet nothing is been said on how they plan to judiciously spend the fund, rather Pinnick claimed they’re waiting to mop up sponsors intervention funds before they could reach decision. But right there in Ghana, Sierra Leone and other part of the world, their FAs already mapped out plans and made to the public how the funds is going be expended long before they received the money from FIFA.

And I asked again, is NFF tacitly deviating public attention from the real issue?

FAKE NEWS: SHEHU DIKKO DEBUNKS STORY OF LMC ENDING SEASON IN CHINA

Chairman on the league management company (LMC), Mallam Shehu Dikko has refute claims circulating that the LMC are considering ending the season in China.

Responding to the story published by busybuddiesng.com in Talk about NPFL, NNL Whatsapp group, Mallam Dikko said its simply a fake news.

In his words, “It’s simply FAKE NEWS… Sad though this is how low some can go in the name of driving traffic to their sites…Just yesterday Mauritania FA said they will be spending 3million Mauritania Francs (about $320k) to support their system and someone deliberately reported that they will be spending $3m USD so it will trend”.

The League was suspended after match day 25 due to the outbreak of Coronavirus and the LMC are only waiting for go ahead from the Federal Government as they are willing to end the season.

SHEHU DIKKO EXPLAINS CONDITIONS HINGING ON NPFL CONTINUATION

The Chairman of the League Management Company LMC Alhaji Shehu Dikko says the decision to continue the league is now hinging on the situation of the country as well as a go ahead from the Federal Government and advise from the Ministry of youth and Sports and its Health Counterpart.

In an interview monitored on Top sports this Tuesday, the LMC boss who doubles as the Second Vice President of the Nigeria Football Federation said a decision has been reached between the League governing body, the NFF and the clubs, but the current situation in the country warrants a go ahead from the Federal Government.

In his words, Dikko said “I think we already have our first contact with the clubs, NFF and everybody and the first objective is to wait and see what the government is doing and see how the country will open”.

He added that “Let’s see if we can complete the season, if we cannot do that, let’s ensure that whatever we are doing, we are doing it on sporting merits”.

The League was suspended after match day 25 due to the outbreak of Coronavirus which led to major sporting events across the globe been halted.

Though few teams including Enyimba and Rangers have got some outstanding games to be played.

Some countries have already called off their leagues due to the pandemic while others are holding on for a clear coast to continue and wrap up the season.

READ: COMMUNIQUE OF THE MEETING OF NFF EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE HELD VIA VIDEO CONFERENCING ON FRIDAY, 24TH APRIL 2020

The Executive Committee of Nigeria Football Federation met via video conferencing on Friday, 24th April 2020 to deliberate on important issues in Nigerian Football and resolved as follows:

1. The Executive Committee praised the Federal Government on the various policies, strategies and methods that have been put in place to combat the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) that has ravaged most of the nations of the world in the past weeks, noting that the FG’s measures have been professional, practical and all-encompassing, and meeting with considerable success. Members also commended the efforts of the Federal Ministry of Health, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and all the public health workers in the frontline in reducing community transmission and saving lives.

2. In deep appreciation of the realities that are bound to unfold after the COVID-19 pandemic and the resumption of football activities, and the various scenarios possible in the circumstances (for which the discerning can already glean a sneak preview), the Board set up an ad-hoc committee headed by the President, Mr. Amaju Melvin Pinnick, to interface with the Federation’s partners and sponsors in the next weeks with a view to appraising, balancing and optimising the relationship each way with a model that will take care of the interest of all parties within the realities on ground.

3. Board mandated the General Secretary to, within the next four (4) weeks, and armed with the realistic projections derivable from the meetings with the partners/sponsors and equipped with new figures from probable subvention from Government and expected grants from the Confederation of African Football (CAF) and world –governing body FIFA, submit to the Board a revised budget for the Federation for the year. This will form the new working document/financial estimate that will be submitted to the NFF Congress for approval at a virtual meeting within the next five weeks, and will guide the operations of the NFF for the remaining part of the year. Extensive sensitisation and mobilisation of stakeholders in the football family will be done for everyone to understand, align with and ingest the new workplan.

4. In line with these new realities, the Federation will prioritize programs, activities and competitions in which to partake, with the engagement of the senior teams being the fulcrum. The President and General Secretary are mandated to cut down expenses from all areas possible and enforce belt-tightening measures in the running of the Federation, to ensure the Federation operates only within the framework of guaranteed revenue.

5. The Board received and endorsed the report of a virtual meeting of the League Management Company and NPFL clubs held on Thursday, 23rd April 2020 and at which decisions were taken including commitment to: conclude the League season after the COVID-19 and resumption of football activities; consider the most plausible format for conclusion of the remaining games; continue to communicate with the Clubs and ensure commitment by the clubs to continuous payment of the salaries of their players, coaches and backroom staff under the current circumstances; arrange testing for all players, coaches and backroom staff (about 1,200 persons in all) before the commencement of matches, with the support of the Federal Ministry of Health and the NCDC; await realities thence to determine whether matches will be played with crowds or not immediately after the restart; give priority to privately-funded clubs for special funds if the LMC secures any exceptional support and; ensure that the LMC and NPFL continue to cogitate on the best way forward for the game this season and coming seasons.

6. In the same vein, the Chairmen of the Nigeria National League, Nigeria Women Football League and Nigeria Nationwide League also presented their projections, with all the three prepared to adjust their programs to align with the 6-8 weeks window agreed with at a virtual meeting of the NFF Board and the Honourable Minister of Sports and Youth Development, Mr. Sunday Dare on Thursday, 16th April 2020.

7. The Committee mandated the President to meet with the Federation’s Official Optimum Partner, AITEO specially to discuss matters involving the AITEO Cup 2020 competition and payment of coaches’ salaries. The NFF will create windows for the various stages of the AITEO Cup competition to run its full course in order for Nigeria to register her representatives for next season’s CAF Confederation Cup competition. Similarly, the NFF/Zenith Bank Future Eagles Championship, which state competitions have already been concluded (with some zones having also completed their competitions) will run its full course immediately after the COVID-19 and resumption of football activities.

8. Following a report by the General Secretary on the recent visit of the FIFA West Zone B Coordinator to Nigeria in respect of NFF’s FIFA Forward Project, the Board approved the commencement of construction of the new projects in Delta and Kebbi States, renewed attention to the abandoned project in Bauchi and the renovation of the Goal Project inside the National Stadium Complex, Abuja (complete with a new pitch and pavillion).

IN ATTENDANCE: Amaju Melvin Pinnick (President); Seyi Akinwunmi (1st Vice President); Shehu Dikko (2nd Vice President); Ibrahim Musa Gusau (Member); Suleiman Yahaya-Kwande (Member); Felix Anyansi-Agwu (Member); Babagana Kalli (Member); Sharif Rabiu Inuwa (Member); Ganiyu Majekodunmi (Member); Emmanuel Ibah (Member); Chidi Ofo Okenwa (Member); Aisha Falode (Member); Mohammed Alkali (Member); Mohammed Sanusi (Secretary)

ABSENT WITH APOLOGY: Yusuf Ahmed ‘Fresh’ (Member); Musa A. Duhu (Member)

©NFFMEDIA

THE AIM IS TO SHOW THE WORLD WHAT I CAN DO AT THIS LEVEL- VICTOR OSIMHEN

Newly signed Lille Metropole Nigerian striker Victor Osimhen says he has always aimed for the top, adding that he is willing to show he can compete in any top League.

The Former Junior International signed a five year deal with the French Ligue 1 outfit yesterday in a deal worth twelve million Euros.

He said “To God be the glory, I’m glad this is happening, and I can’t wait to show the world what I can do at this level”

“I really can’t wait to start helping my team and start representing my nation Nigeria”.

Many are of the opinion that Osimhen is the French Club’s replacement for Nicholas Pepe who has teamed up with English side Arsenal

LILLE SIGNS OSIMHEN ON A FIVE YEAR DEAL

French Club Lille Metropole have announced the signing of Super Eagles Striker Victor Osimhen from Sporting Charleroi on a five year deal.

The former Junior International has put pen to paper after passing medicals with the Ligue 1 outfit.

Lille on their official Twitter handle said “A big #LOSC welcome to our newest signing, forward Victor Osimhen, who joins us from Sporting Charleroi on a five-year deal!”

Many believe Osimhen is a suitable replacement for Ivorian forward Nicholas Pepe who has moved on to join Arsenal in England.

Osimhen scored 20 goals in all Competitions for Charleroi last season and is expected to better than tally in France due to his current form.

ETEBO REACTS TO VIRAL DEFAMATORY VIDEO

Super Eagles and Stoke City midfielder Oghenekaro Peter Etebo has reacted to the defamatory video making rounds about him.

In a press statement released by the Head of Media and Communication of
Etebo Oghenekaro Peter Foundation, Bayo Adegboyega, the malicious attempt to put the name of the energetic mildfilder into disrepute via the viral video was debunked.

Our attention has been drawn to a perceived sponsored video on Instagram credited to one G- Papa directed at Super Eagles Midfielder Etebo Oghenekaro.

G- Papa in the video claimed Etebo left his roots and forgot everything about Warri, immediately he made money, He also added that the Stoke City man has refused to give back to the club that raised him in Warri, Delta State.

Let me categorically state that the claims of G-Papa are not only false, but Malicious, destructive, defamatory, spiteful, venomous and evil.

There would have been no need for a response, but well meaning Nigerians who Etebo represents deserves to be abreast of some things, they also need to know that Etebo Oghenekaro Peter is a man who respects his roots and will never stop identifying and representing.

Firstly, as regards relocation, every individual has the fundamental right to move at any point in life, without certification from another individual, Etebo is not an exception, He is human.

Another scary thing Nigerians may not know is that one Mr. Joel Okolakpa, popularly known as Noja, the owner of Etebo’s youth team serially and consistently threatened to break Etebo’s legs if he steps into Warri, though Etebo reported to the Police and will not stop visiting Warri, whenever he is in the country, Noja has consistently acted violently due to his own selfish interest and sense of entitlements.

Noja, in 2016 slapped Mr Eddie Ogbemudia, Etebo’s long time ally and representative in Etebo’s family house, when they requested to get the N3m share from the N10M Noja collected from Hon. Kunle Soname for Etebo’s move to CD Fereinse in Portugal, as earlier agreed in Senegal during the Africa Under 23 Cup Of Nations, despite also collecting a Highlander Jeep, Noja refused to pay Etebo till date and won’t stop threatening, basically, Noja feels Etebo is obligated to pay him monthly salaries.

It may shock you to read that Etebo Oghenekaro regularly paid 20 percent of his wages at Warri Wolves to Noja, even after Noja had collected transfer fees from Warri Wolves.

Etebo’s move to Las Palmas in Spain and Stoke City has generated more than a N100m naira for Noja’s club, Lord Honour FC, so I’m shocked to hear that He isn’t buying them jerseys.

Etebo, until recently personally sponsored trips and pay match bonuses to players of the club, as a way of giving back to the roots that brought him up, I really would not know why such a man with a good heart will be a subject of ridicule and attack.

Etebo has prioritised giving back to society, due to the fact that he is also a product of the street, through Etebo Oghenekaro Peter Foundation, which is in Warri, Delta State, He has spent over N30m in his pet project for humanity.

Through this Foundation, Public Schools across Delta State have also benefitted from the benevolence of Etebo, in July 2018, Schools in Delta state were visited by a team from the foundation, led by Etebo himself to distribute school items, in November 2018, more than ten thousand text books and other items were also distributed to another 64 primary Schools in Delta State.

Do I need to also mention the team’s visit to Kids Orphanage homes? Widows of fallen heroes were also reached out to, among other money consuming projects.

Unfortunately, G-Papa obviously was either fed with the wrong information, or decided to be ignorant or bitterly interested in pulling down a pillar of support, he also said that a friend of Etebo had his wedding and He refused to show up, categorically I am stating that the man in question is not even Etebo’s friend, he is actually the team manager of his grassroot club, Mr Omodiagbe Usiaho the relationship existing between them is strictly professional, still at that, Etebo financially sponsored His wedding from the beginning to the end, but couldn’t attend because the following day was his own traditional marriage.

Let me state categorically that the video will not in anyway stop him from touching lives in his own little way, Etebo Oghenekaro loves the street, loves Warri and Delta State as a whole, His parents still resides in Delta State till date, and they represent him daily in reaching out to those in need, Etebo’s close friends can also attest to the fact that He is always available to be of help whenever they call on him

He contributed his quota to the education of a little school girl, Success, who was sent away from school some months back, there are also some assistance he has rendered, just like every other golden hearted individuals, which is better without the media hype.

Few weeks ago, he invited his friends John Ogu and Victor Osimhen to Summer Camp With Etebo sponsored by SpringSoca Academy in Lagos where they played and trained with hundreds of kids.

Etebo Oghenekaro Peter has also confirmed that arrangements are in top gear to stage a grassroot football competition in Warri, Delta State, details will be made public as soon as possible.

Etebo Oghenekaro is hereby restating his resolve and commitment to always identify with his people, he also appreciates everyone who has supported and still supporting his football career one way or the other.