It will be football glitz and glamour in Uboma, Imo State as the inaugural Nationwide League One NLO/Ikukuoma Super Cup kicks off on Wednesday September 6 with an opening fixture between Summer FC and Ave FC.
The NLO secretariat, which last week listed 18 teams, which included two wild cards, released the groupings, match fixtures, timing, and venues that will host the 10-day tournament.
The Uboma Secondary School Stadium Complex, in Ihitte/Uboma LGA, Imo State will host matches of the NLO Super League.
Six (6) groups A to F, have three teams each; as they will battle for pride in the group phase, for a winner from each group to qualify for the Second Round after 18 matches.
The top teams from the six (6) groups will square up against themselves in a Group A and Group B format made up of three (3) teams each, with only the two (2) best teams qualifying for the final of the NLO/Ikukuoma Super Cup billed for Saturday, September 16.
Teams drawn in Group A are Ihitte Uboma-based Summer FC, Ave FC, and Golden Albium FC (Delta State). Group B has Buratai FC (Yobe State), Palm Syrup FC (Akwa-Ibom State), and Paul E FC (FCT), while JSC FC Suleja (Niger State), Divine Praise FC (Lagos State) and Kofar Soro FC from Katsina State make up Group C.
Ikukuoma FC (Imo State), Ablegod FC (Ondo State) with Kano-based Hausawa United FC are in Group D, followed by Tudun Wada FC (Kano State), Zeal Minds FC (Benue State) and Vandrezzer Academy (Akwa Ibom State) in Group E.
The trio of DOHZ FA (Kwara State), Discovery Academy (Kebbi State), and FC Ebedei JNR will slug things out in Group F.
Chief Operating Officer of the nation’s third-tier league, Olushola Ogunnowo who spoke ahead of the kickoff.
“We know that Nigerians are passionate about football, so we want to make our grassroot football irresistibly appealing to them and the rest of the World.
“All is still in top gear for the inaugural NLO/Ikukuoma Super Cup without hitches in terms of the logistics we have put in place,” said the NLO’s COO Olushola Ogunnowo.
The tournament which will be keenly contested will see invited foreign scouts, and eight Sporting Directors from different leagues across the world in attendance.
However, the NLO broadcasting department will be live-streaming all matches from the championship for fans all over the world to see.
LG Football Councils Appoint Chairman, Secretary
Rivers State Local Government Football Councils(RSLGC), has appointed the Chairman of Gokana Football Council, Martins Giadom as it’s Coordinator and Chinasa Elekwachi of the Onelga FC as Secretary.
In a meeting held in Port Harcourt last week, the 23 Football Councils in Rivers State agreed that the election of Martins Giadom and Chinasa Elekwachi as Chairman and Secretary, respectively will serve as a clearing house for a formidable grassroot sports development to support the good works of the State FA Board led by Barr. Christopher Green.
The LG FCs resolved to be proactive in their dealings with the Executive Chairmen of Council such that their impact will be felt as partners in progress
The LG Football Councils further agreed to regularly present major issues and challenges before the State FA Board for consideration.
It called for the resuscitation of the moribund Rivers State Governor’s Cup, urging relevant authorities to take action on the matter in the interest of football development in Rivers State.
The body stressed the need for all LGA FCs to be encouraged to run Football related activities within their jurisdiction, report and restrain non stakeholders from setting up political football committees who will further usurp the duties of LG Football Councils at the various Local Council Areas in the State.
Navy To Sponsor Team In NPL
The Flag Officer Commanding (FOC) Eastern Naval Command, Olusola Oluwagbire, has disclosed plans by the Navy to sponsor a football team in the Nigeria Football League.
Oluwagbire said this at the opening of the maiden edition of FOC Eastern Naval Command Intra-Command football competition in Calabar at the weekend.
Oluwagbire said the essence of the competition was to re-engineer the physical fitness and inspire a sense of comradeship in the personnel.
“This competition is to bring together officers, civilian staff and corps members with us together to re-engineer their physical fitness.
“It is also aimed at strengthening the relationship among the personnel and also to maintain their mental alertness.
“It has been long in coming and we are thankful that we finally got it off today,” he stated.
Oluwagbire who was elated with the turnout of teams for the competition, said it would be sustained.
In a remark, the Speaker of the Cross River House of Assembly, Elvert Ayambem, called for the sustainability of the competition, adding that the state governments have plans to revive sports.
More Nigerian Wrestlers Will Qualify For Olympics –Comptroller General
The acting Comptroller-General, Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Mr Adewale Adeniyi, has expressed optimism that more Nigerian wrestlers will qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics.
He stated this on Saturday in Abuja after the inauguration of the ‘Work-Life Balance’ initiative which is a routine 5km brisk walk exercise meant to keep officers and men of the NCS physically and mentally fit.
Adeniyi who is also a board member of the Nigeria Wrestling Federation (NWF) said this against the backdrop of only one Nigerian female wrestler securing Olympic qualification in the just concluded World Wrestling Championships in Serbia.
The tude source reports that only three-time Commonwealth Champion, Odunayo Adekuoroye, secured a bronze medal in the women’s 57kg category at the just concluded Championship, to qualify for the Paris 2024 Olympics Games.
Team Nigeria was represented by six female wrestlers at the championships.
The customs boss however maintains there is no cause for alarm, as there are still two more pre-Olympics qualifiers, where he hopes more Nigerian male and female wrestlers will qualify.
“I am not disappointed with the performance of the wrestling team in Serbia.
“The competition in Serbia is one of the various competitions lined-up to get slots at the Paris Olympics, there are still one or two championships.
“I am very sure there will be one (championships) in March in Egypt and those of our athletes who did not get the ticket, would have the opportunity to do so,” he said.
Adeniyi said with the quality of wrestlers in camp and the continued training and exposure being given to them, the sky is the limit.
“What we had in Serbia was just our women team, we also have our men in camp and they are in top condition.
“I believe our male and female teams stand a very chance with the level of preparation and exposure we are going to give them ahead of the outing in March,” he said.
On the ‘Work-Life Balance’ initiative, the Customs CG expressed optimism that the initiative will lead to better wellbeing and productivity for officers and men of the NCS.
The theme for the Saturday’s Walk/ exercise is: “balancing for better tomorrow “ and it had participants from other para-military agencies.
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