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Local FA In Nigeria Rallies Interests For Governor’s Cup

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In Nigeria where soccer attracts little or no corporate interests, naming a soccer tournament after an office holder, politician or philantropists attracts necesssry funds for soccer development like it’s going to happen in Kwara, a North Central State in Nigeria from Wednesday this week.

The Governor’s Cup, a football tournament so named to attract state Chief executive, is a regular sports fiesta in most states in Nigeria.

But in Kwara, the state Football Association, FA, under its helmsman, Idris Abdullahi Musa, takes this soccer tournament format to new hieght.

Musa, known more as ‘Thuraya’ on account of a famed ubiquitousness in soccer related connectivity in Nigeria and beyond, says that this year’s Governor’s Cup is strictly Under-15.

“It’s Kwara’s unique selling point,” he tells Diaspora Digital Media.

The state two years ago was Nigeria’s Under 15 champion. They were not in Asaba, capital of Delta, South South, state of the country to defend the title on account of paucity of funds from the state government.

Thuraya says he intends to make Kwara a reference point as far as youth soccer in Nigeria is concerned.

This year’s Governor’s Cup affords him another opportunity to leave up to this promise.

Local/municipal provinces justle for trophy in this tournament. And in Kwara, there 16 in all, requiring humongous funding.

But Thuraya has secured critical backing from a Senator, Umar Sadiq, an urbane and seasoned politician with an unparalleled interests in sports development in his state.

“It’s going to big. And we will make so,” Thuraya added.

Initial plan was to have the country’s Nigerian Football Federation, NFF, president attend the opening ceremony. But the plan couldn’t work after last minutes changes.

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But the anticipated thrills of the fiesta is the still very much in the air in Ilorin, the state capital where the games will be played within the state owned stadium.

In addition to winning prizes, the each team will be kitted at FA’s expense, and will be in Ilorin for the duration of the competition.


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