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NFF Top Official Joins Falconets For More Technical Support

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The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has dispatched its Deputy General Secretary (Technical), Dr Emmanuel Ikpeme, to Germany, to strengthen technical and administrative support for Nigeria’s Women Under-20 football team, the Falconets.

The Falconets are in Germany for the on-going 2010 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup.

The team drew 1-1 with England in their first Group C match last Wednesday in Augsburg, where they also beat Japan 2-1 in their second match at the weekend.

The Falconets will face Mexico in their final group game today in Bochum.

Tidesport learnt that Ikpeme, who is a trained psychologist, joined the team at the weekend, after leaving Abuja for Germany.

He joined other team officials such as Mr Stephen Gyebgon, NFF Executive Committee member and leader of delegation; and Mr James Peters, the federation’s Assistant General Secretary (Technical).

A source at the NFF’s Glass House Secretariat, told our source on condition of anonymity, that the federation decided to strengthen technical and administrative support for the team to enable it succeed in the competition.

“We are aware of the team’s need of a win to stay in contention for a quarter-final ticket, and we feel we need a strong hand there to ensure technical matters are put right,’’ he said.

The source also said Ikpeme’s trip was a way of ensuring that technical support to the team’s handlers was not lacking, especially with psychology being Ikpeme’s area of specialisation.

“It is one of the ways Dr Bolaji Ojo-Oba, the NFF General Secretary, does things to ensure we achieve success. He feels Ikpeme will be able to do a good job there.

“And judging from their display at the weekend against Japan, this has proved to be a good decision, and we are hoping to reap more from this advantage in subsequent matches.

“Moreover, Ojo-Oba needs to put right a lot of things at the secretariat, and he feels that the Falconets need a lot of help to be able to do Nigeria proud in Germany,’’ he said.

The source also revealed that the secretary general had been busy lately at the NFF secretariat, coordinating the federation’s administrative activities ahead of the NFF August 21 elective congress.

“Ojo-Oba has been busy lately with so many things ahead of the NFF’s August 21 elections and the national youth teams’ matches scheduled for later this month and next month.

“Moreover, there is the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup coming up in September in Trinidad and Tobago, and there is the need to ensure that plans are put in place for Nigeria ’s success in all these engagements,” the source said.

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ICC U-19: Nigeria Battles Big Wigs In Abuja

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Nigeria was presented the tough task of battling with Rwanda in the opening game of the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) U-19 Men’s World Cup Africa Division 2 Qualifiers, which began at the twin-ovals of the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja, yesterday.
The One Day International (ODI) format championship also had in contention such tough nations as Kenya, Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Ghana and Sierra Leone. They were all trying to be among the top-three nations to move from the qualifiers to the next level.
Ahead of the competition, Ghana and majority of Bostwana’s team arrived late Thursday night, which development caused slight changes in the tournament fixtures.
According to the Chairman of the Local Organising Committee (LOC), Ogbonnaya Okogeri, the big win for Nigeria is being able to put up the standard required for hosting this international event.
“This is the second ICC event that Nigeria will host, but this is unique in that it is on a higher level because of the quality of facility and personnel required to pull it off.
“So far, we have been able to meet up on so many fronts and as the event gets off the ground formally, our joy will be to coast home smoothly with a successful hosting.”
ICC Global Developmental Manager, William Glenwright, who was around earlier in the week, had said the country’s feat in cricket developmental index has been impressive and has earned a look in from the global body for more support.
Nigeria between 2018 and 2019 scaled the U-19 World Cup ticket for her maiden appearance on the global stage at the World Cup in January 2020 in South Africa, an achievement Nigeria’s team handler, Daniel Gim, has assured they have set as benchmark.
“We have put in the hard work and I am sure, as a team, we are hungry to scale to the next stage and above all return to the World Cup,” he ahead of today’s opener. The tournament will end on October 9.

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Globacom Unveils Amusan As New Ambassador

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Telecommunications services provider, Globacom, has unveiled current African, Commonwealth and World 100m hurdles champion, Tobi Amusan, as its latest brand ambassador.
Tobi became the first Nigerian world champion in an athletic event, when she won the gold medal in metres hurdles at the 2022 World Athletics Championships. She set a new world record of 12.12 seconds in the semifinal, and followed this up with 12.06 seconds (wind aided) in the final to take the gold medal.
Speaking at the event, Globacom’s Regional Manager, Sales, Lagos, Lawrence Odediran, said the company’s decision to make Amusan its ambassador was not just to reward her for her sterling accomplishments, but also to help the growth of sports in Nigeria. Odediran also said the endorsement would encourage the country’s teeming youths to aspire toward realising their dreams by looking up to the new ambassador as mentor.
“At Globacom, we are very proud of what Tobi Amusan has achieved in her athletics career. She is an embodiment of the Nigerian spirit of resilience, hard work and enterprise, which enabled her to excel irrespective of the enormity of the challenges she encountered in her quest for success. These are qualities that Globacom identifies with,” Odediran stated.
He explained that Amusan has become a testimony to the famous saying by Malcolm X that “the future belongs to those who prepare for it today,” adding, “she prepared very hard in the previous years and today belongs to her.
“Tomorrow is also waiting for other determined Nigerian and African youths who begin their preparations today. We, therefore, urge them not to be discouraged by present challenges, but to continue to strive to realise their dreams.”

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Gusau Emerges NFF President

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Alhaji Ibrahim Musa Gusau has been elected the new President of Nigeria Football Federation (NFF).
He was elected yesterday at the NFF’s 78th Elective Congress in Benin, the Edo State capital.
In the first ballot, Gusau polled 21 votes to finish first ahead of former Ist Vice President, Barrister Seyi Akinwunmi who got 12 votes while the erstwhile League Management Committee (LMC) Chairman, Shehu Dikko got just six votes. Peteside Idah and Abbah Yola got one vote each.
While the trio of Akinwunmi, Dikko, Yola opted out of a possible rerun since Gusau did not get the mandatory 22 votes to win in the first ballot, Idah pressed for a rerun and it was conducted by the electoral body.
In the ensuing rerun, Gusau polled 39 votes while Idah got one vote, while one was voided.
With that, the former Chairman of Chairmen in the last board led by Amaju Melvin Pinnick becomes the 40th man to lead Nigerian football.

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