By: Gracious Akujobi
President of the Nigeria Football Federation, Aminu Maigari says he expects a ‘surefire spectacular grand finale’ to the 68th Federation Cup competition in Lagos on Sunday.
For the first time in history, the final matches of the women and men’s competitions are being staged the same day, alongside a number of innovations designed to boost the panache of the finale to the oldest club competition in the land.
Maigari, whose administration has been highly committed to restoring the glory and glamour of the Federation Cup, said on Friday that he knows Rivers Angels and Nasarawa Amazons in the women’s sector, and Enyimba FC and Warri Wolves FC in the men’s event, will give spectators and fans watching at home moments to last them a long time.
“I am aware of the quality of the four teams on display. They are strong and capable, and will treat everyone to a memorable afternoon. The four teams also have impressive fan base and will storm Lagos with their supporters, to complement the already-guaranteed 10,000 fans that Lagos State Government has mobilised.
“I praise the Lagos State Government for the innovations that the administration continues to bring to the Federation Cup. We are happy to be in partnership with them with regards to the grand finale, and on our part, we will continue to ensure global best practices in organisation and actual delivery of the men and women competition,” said Maigari.
On Friday, members of the Main Organising Committee, co-chaired by Lagos State Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Wahid Enitan Oshodi and NFF Vice President, Chief Mike Okeke Umeh, held a ‘check-all-details’ meeting at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, to ensure a hitch-free finale.
As at Friday morning, three of the four teams involved in the grand finale, viz Enyimba FC, Rivers Angels and Nasarawa Amazons had arrived in Lagos. Organisers have arranged facilities for their official training sessions.
The match coordination meeting will take place at the Media Conference room of the Teslim Balogun Stadium on Saturday evening. All the match officials will also arrive on Saturday.
Organisers are also hands-on an arrangement to have spectators park their cars at a dedicated car park inside the adjacent National Stadium Complex as the space inside Teslim Balogun is not adequate to accommodate every vehicle.
Top officials of Lagos State Government also assured on Friday that cheques for the prize monies for the winners, runners-up, Most Valuable Players and Top Scorers are also ready.
The winner of the Men’s competition will go home with N2 million, the runner-up N1 million, the Most Valuable Player N150,000 and Top Scorer N100,000.
In the women’s event, the winner will pocket the sum of N1 million, runner-up N500,000, Most Valuable Player N150,000 and Top Scorer N100,000.
About one thousand security personnel will be on hand to provide safety and security of persons and materials at the event, billed to start with the women’s Final at 1.30pm.
Accreditation for media personnel will take place at the Secretariat of the Lagos SWAN inside the National Stadium, Surulere between 10am and 2pm on Saturday.
Organisers have confirmed that only photojournalists with powerful zoom lens will be able to cover the medals’ presentation, which will take place in the VIP area.