A street-to-street soccer tournament tagged”, Kokoriko Street Soccer Cup” would kick off in August this year, courtesy of football administrator, Chief Godspower Okokoriko.
Also underway are Under-20 and 21 Cup tournaments that would cut across seven centres in Rivers State and one in Bayelsa State.
Making plans for the tournaments public in an interview with Tidesports, organiser and initiator of the events, Chief Okokoriko said logistics towards holding the competition are in advanced stage.
He disclosed that the body has introduced new trophies in the name of Obi Wali for Obio/Akpor, Ken Saro-Wiwa in Gokana area, King Jaja in Opobo/Nkoro axis and Adam Fiberesima in Okrika.
Others he listed include Claude Ake Cup in Ogba/Egbema, Agbanni Daerego in Akuku-Toru and Adaka Boro Cup in Bayelsa State.
Emphasising why the tournaments were instituted, Okokoriko said”, we believe that sports bring people together. In short, sports is evangelism for peace.”
The president of the United Youths Sports Federation of Nigeria (UYSFON) also described sports as a weapon to tackle youth restiveness and other social vices.
Lamenting the gradual ebb of grassroots sports, Chief Okokoriko said such tournaments can be a platform of discovering new and budding talents.
He reiterated the need for the government to exploit sports as a means of empowering the youths, noting that Kanus, Taribos and Finidis of today were discovered in similar tournaments.
Chief Okokoriko also stressed the need for the authorities to institute peace cup tournaments among warring youths and communities in the stamp, as a way of stamping out acrimony within the society.
He lamented that so many sports tournaments have failed in the country because of lack of sponsors and therefore tasked corporate bodies not to shy away from their social responsibilities.
Ilechukwu Set To Make History With Plateau United
Plateau United coach, Fidelis Ilechukwu, says his side is all set for the start of 2021/22 Nigeria Professional Football League season and he hopes to make history with the club.
The season’s resumption date which has been fixed for December 17, is set to be ratified by the league management company on December 7 at its general assembly in Abuja.
According to the fixtures released and made available to Tidesports source, Plateau United is billed to face newcomers Niger Tornadoes away from home.
Tidesports source reports that Ilechukwu, who joined the team during the transfer window from Heartland FC would be hoping to start the season in an impressive fashion.
“We are prepared, the players are doing fine and we can’t wait for the season,” Ilechukwu said.
“The players are well motivated and all they want to do is go out there and give their all.”
Other matchday one fixtures to be played across the federation will see champions, Akwa United, tackle Kano Pillars, Enyimba slugs it out with Abia Warriors in a derby, Lobi Stars will entertain Rivers United while there will be a battle of newcomers between Gombe United and Shooting Stars.
Enugu Rangers will travel to face Katsina United in their season’s opener. Sunshine Stars play Wikki Tourists, Kwara United vs Dakkada, Heartland vs Nasarawa United, while there’ll be an early Southwest derby between MFM FC and Remo Stars in Lagos.
ph City Marathon: Athletes, Collect Participation Number Morrow
The Chief Organiser of Port Harcourt City Marathon, Goodluck Azunwena, has expressed satisfaction over the reactions of people and number of athletes that registered for the competition.
He revealed that collection of athlete’s participation number would take place tomorrow, at Las Mall, Rumukalagbor, in Port Harcourt City Local Government Area.
Azunwena said this in a telephone interview with Tidesports, yesterday, saying that the basic aim is to engage the youth meaningfully and change the negative perception of the State.
According to him, “Port Harcourt to the World,” the organization that is organising competition had organised other events that have positive impact on the people, particularly in 2018, they organized what was called Music Ran Port Harcourt.
“This organization was established in 2016 with the sole aim to promote the city positively and encourage people to change the negative perception of the city in and outside the state.
So far I am impressed with people’s reactions towards the competition and number of athletes that registered for the event,” Azunwena said.
Meanwhile, the 16 kilo meter race is scheduled to take place next Saturday in Port Harcourt, the winner of the competition will go home with N1 million, as second and third positionswill cart away N500,000 and N250, 000, respectively.
While fourth to ten position will have consolation prize of N50,000 each.
By: Tonye Orabere
Nnadozie’s Rating As World’s Seventh Best Thrills Izilien
Former Coach of Super Falcons, Godwin Izilien, has described Chiamaka Nnadozie’s ranking as the world’s seventh best woman goalkeeper as a clear indication that Nigeria has abundant talented female footballers at the grassroots waiting to be discovered.
Izilien, who commended the Paris of France FC goaltender for putting Nigeria on the world map in women football, urged stakeholders in the ladies’ game to pay more attention to talent discovery, stressing that discovering and nurturing women players when they are still young will raise the country’s standard in the game.
“I am delighted on the news that Nnadozie has been rated the seventh best goalkeeper in the world. This is a remarkable achievement for the young lady, who started her football career in Nigeria.
“She played for the cadet teams and Nigerian clubs before moving abroad. I have said it before that Nigeria has talents in women football… all they need is to be discovered and exposed.
“Nnadozie’s achievement is a clear testimony that a player can be discovered in Nigeria and be among the best in the world when given the right exposure. Football stakeholders should leverage her achievements to look more to grassroots football development.
“Getting young talents from the grassroots remains the direction to develop women’s football in Nigeria,” he said.
Tidesports source reports that Nnadozie was selected among the best in the goalkeeping position by the International Federation of Football History and Statistics (IFFHS).
The rankings of the women goalkeepers were for an aggregate of 2021 taking into consideration performances for their club and country.
The ex Rivers Angels goalkeeper, who made her debut for Nigeria at the Jordan U-17 Women’s World Cup also in 2019, became the youngest goalkeeper to keep a clean sheet at the Women’s World Cup.
Nnadozie also helped Nigeria to win gold medal at the African Games in Morocco, saving three penalties in the shootout against Cameroun.
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