Sunshine Stars Protest Over Unpaid Wages

Sunshine Stars Protest Over Unpaid WagesPlayers of the Sunshine Stars and staff of the Ondo State Football Agency, have protested over non-payment of salary arrears as well as sign-on fees.

According to the protesters, the government is owing them up to 13 months and 6 months salary arrears for the staff and players as well as sign on fees for the players.

Sunshine Stars are currently 15th on the Nigeria Professional League (NPL) table with just two victories from nine league games.

Nigerian Premier League: Warri Wolves Set For 2016

Warri WolvesThe management of Warri Wolves FC has commenced preparation for its participation in this year’s Nigerian Premier League (NPL).

Unveiling 14 new players for the season formed part of its preparation, amidst training and rehabilitation of the Warri stadium in Delta State.

Some of the newly unveiled players, Oladele Ajiboye and King Osange, also expressed optimisms that the football club would achieve great feat in the 2016 edition of the NPL.

Warri Wolves finished second in the just concluded GLO Premier League behind Enyimba FC of Aba.

In another development, the Delta Force team have come back after a long absence from the league.

Playing in the second division of the league for the first time, they have promised to do their best to get to the NPL.

The team’s coach, Napolion Aloma, appealed to the government for further assistance to help them achieve their goals.

Keshi Invites 24 NPL Players Ahead World Cup Qualifiers

Stephen Keshi has released his list of players that will be invited to the camp ahead of the clash with Kenya in the World Cup qualifier coming up on March 23rd. The coach released a list of 24 players mainly from the Nigeria Premier League players, promising that the list of the foreign based players that has been invited will be made public on Thursday.

Coach Keshi will out of the 24 local-based players select those that will form part of the Super Eagles squad that will square up with Kenya in Calabar.

Out of the glorious Super Eagles squad at the Afcon 2013 in South Africa, local stars Sunday Mba and Godfrey Oboabona made the list released by Stephen Keshi today and they will all report to the Abuja camp on Sunday, the 10th of March at the usual camping site of the Super Eagles.

Invited Players:

Goalkeepers are Chigozie Agbim, Rangers; Daniel Akpeyi, Heartland and Dele Ajiboye, 3SC.

Defenders –  Azubuike Egwueke, Warri Wolves; Papa Idris, Kano Pillars; Godfrey Oboabona, Sunshine Stars; Benjamin Francis, Heartland; Solomon Kwambe, Heartland;  Chibuzor Okonkwo, Rangers; Ezekiel Bassey, Lobi Stars; Mohamed Zubaru, Niger Tornadoes and Umar Zango, Kano Pillars;

Midfielders & Forward: Adepoju Taofeek, 3SC; Jiya Muhammed, Bayelsa FC; Saka Ayo, Enyimba; Sunday Mba, Warri Wolves; Pius Samson, Ranchers Bees; Emeka Ezeh, Rangers; Obinna Nwachukwu, Heartland; Mannir Ubale, Kano Pillars; Gomo Ohanduku, Sharks; Gambo Muhammed, Kano Pillars; Anthony Okputu, Lobi Stars and Reuben Gabriel, Kano Pillars.

                                               

 

Sunday Mba: NPL Rules In Favour Of Warri Wolves

The Nigeria Premier League has waded into the on-going feud between Warri Wolves and Enugu Rangers over the ownership of Sunday Mba and Chigozie Agbim by ruling that the Super Eagles duo belong to Warri Wolves.

Enugu Rangers is laying claim to Mba, insisting he has always been their player and had been training with them before the 2013 Nations Cup in South Africa.

However, in a letter signed by the executive secretary of the NPL, Tunji Babalola, Mba and Agbim have been declared as players of Warri Wolves.

The league interim management committee has, therefore, asked any club interested in the players to contact Warri Wolves.

A tussle arose between Warri Wolves and Enugu Rangers over the ownership of the 24-year-old Eagles midfielder since foreign clubs started showing interest in the player after the Afcon 2013.

Spokesman of the Warri-based professional football club, Moses Etu, said on Sunday that the Delta State-owned team was not ready to join issues with Rangers on the player as Mba knew he had a two-year contract with Warri Wolves.

“Sunday Mba has only spent one year out of the two-year contract he signed with us. It is on the basis of this that we are giving him up till Friday, March 1 to return to our camp ahead of the new football season we are preparing for,” observed.

The Warri Wolves media officer hinted that the matter has been reported to the Nigeria Football Federation.

“We have absolute confidence in NFF believing that they will follow the path of justice. We have the documents signed by Mba and requests by Rangers for us to clear the players for them which we refused to do,” he said.

“We have also written the NFF to apply the relevant sanctions regarding inducement and misleading of the public by Rangers International on this matter.”

Etu further warned that Warri Wolves would not hesitate to report the matter to the Confederation of African Football (CAF) and the world football governing body, FIFA if need be.

“We have confidence in NFF but we won’t hesitate to take the matter to CAF and FIFA. Rangers can be banned from further participation in the CAF Champions League while the player faces the prospect of being banned for years,” stressed the club spokesman.

Although some foreign clubs are said to be making enquiries on how to sign the Super Eagles players, the current ownership struggle between the two NPL clubs may scuttle such moves. Warri Wolves last week placed a one million euro transfer tag on the player now under dispute.

The defender rose to stardom after he scored two goals for Nigeria at the Nations Cup, which put Nigeria in reckoning and ultimately claiming the 2013 Afcon trophy.

Now the hitherto unknown local player is now the talk of several transfers within European clubs.

 

 

 

Sunday Mba; Super Hot Target For Clubs In Europe

Nigeria’s Afcon 2013 sensation; 24-year-old midfielder Sunday Mba he is being wooed by many Premier League clubs as he plots a move away from his Nigerian side Warri Wolves.

Mba’s exploits and performance at the just concluded Afcon 2013 where Nigeria emerged eventual winners of the competition in South Africa attracted a number of scouts to monitor his progression.

Though, still with his local club Warri Wolves, Mba revealed that he is open to a move from the club to Europe after being inundated with offers from several top clubs in Europe.

It is understood Andre Villas-Boas had a scout keeping a close eye on him, but the north-London club are expected to face competition from Everton and Reading for the £4million man.

“I won’t lie, I have been inundated with offers from England, Spain, Italy and some other countries but I will not be hasty in reaching a decision now,” Mba ended.

NPL Interim Management Inaugurated, Baribote Heads To Court

The controversy plaguing the board of the Nigerian Premier League has been laid to rest, at least for now as a new 13-man interim management of the league was inaugurated yesterday.

The management will be responsible for the running of the affairs of the NPL, pending the election of a new board.

Corruption charges were brought against the head of the previous board; Rumson Victor Baribote as he was accused of misappropriation of funds and a lack of transparency and accountability which was held to blame for the failure of the NPL to attract sponsorship.

How the legal practitioner has decided to take his case to the Federal High Court despite his removal.

The committee will be headed by former member of the House of Representatives, Nduka Irabor and includes Nwankwo Kanu; NPL Secretary-General, Tunji Babalola; Mike Enahoro; Shehu Dikko; Modele Sarafa-Yusuf; Abubakar Nuhu Dan Buran; Kunle Elebute; Mike Idoko; former Secretary-General of the NPL Salisu Abubakar; chairman of Kaduna United FC Sabo Babayaro; chairman of Lagos State Football Association Seyi Akinwunmi and Ifeanyi Dike.

The new committee has been charged with organising the 2012/2013 season, which does not yet have an agreed start date, with reviewing all NPL contracts, with dealing with TV and sponsorship rights, developing strategy, reforming the League to achieve profitability and reviewing procedures for elections to the NPL board. It will also develop new standards for players contracts.

NPL Impasse:Sack of Baribote-led board the only option — Idoko

Mike Idoko; the Chairman of the six-man interim committee of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL) said the option for the way forward in the Nigerian Premier League was the sacking of the former board chairman of the league body, Chief Victor Rumson Baribote.

And this was the decision of the 20 Premier League clubs.

He said that the former NPL board had failed in the development of the league, stressing that the gains made over the years by previous boards had been eroded with the administrative style of the sacked board, thereby stagnating the progress of the NPL, during the inaugural meeting in Abuja yesterday.

“We had to do this in the interest of the league and Nigerian football. Clubs used to benefit financially from the title sponsorship money and at a point we were fighting for increment. But in the last two seasons or so, the clubs have been made to bear the brunt of NPL’s inability to source for sponsors,” he said.

“We don’t have any problem with Baribote as a person but it’s glaring that his board failed and we have to move forward. Clubs spent heavily on match indemnities due to the inefficiency of the board under Baribote, while the players suffer because the little the clubs had were being used in covering the glaring inefficiency of the board.

Idoko further described the Baribote led-board that it lacked transparency and accountability, hence a window for the inability of the league to attract title sponsorship for the past two seasons, as he cited the hard work and transparency of other boards before the Baribote-led board, it will be recalled that

Idoko was part of the glory days of the NPL under Chief Oyuki Obaseki.

 

NFF puts NPL congress on hold

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) said it had put on hold the 7th congress of the Nigeria Premier League (NPL) following another development around domestic league administration.

On Tuesday, the NFF  issued the NPL with a go-ahead order for its congress proposed for Thursday, December the 6th, but a group of premier league club owners met in Abuja on Tuesday night and announced they had kicked out the NPL board.

A statement by the General Secretary, Musa Amadu stated that NFF is uncomfortable with the continued delay in the commencement of the 2012/2013 premier league season, which can only roll off the ground after the congress.

But it fears there could be a breakdown of law and order should the congress go ahead on December the 6th, 2012.

The NFF executive committee would hold an emergency meeting on Friday to conclusively resolve several issues around the league.

Baribote denies removal

Meanwhile another crisis appears looming in the domestic league as chairman of the NPL; Victor Baribote has said he is not aware his NPL board has been sacked by the 16 NPL club owners. He insisted that the club bosses are not working within the league statutes.

The clubs met Tuesday night in Abuja to dissolve the board of the Nigeria premier league led by Baribote and appointed a six-man interim committee to run the local league pending fresh elections to the board.

However, Baribote said Wednesday he is unaware of such a decision.

According to spokesman of the clubs fan, Ndubu Oke, the NPL congress, slated to hold on Thursday in Kano was illegal as none of the clubs were notified, three months prior to the congress as stipulated in the statutes.

The Heartland FC general manager also said they got their powers to dissolve the NPL board from Article 22 of the statutes after setting aside Articles 24, 25 and 26.

 

Sunshine Stars to get N106 million ($665,000) for CAF semi final clash

Sunshine Stars, Nigeria’s last club in the CAF Champions League was beaten 4-3 on aggregate to six-time winners Al Ahly in the semi-finals of this year’s competition, and for playing the semi-final stage of the competition the Akure club will be given $665,000 (about N106 million).

Taking a peep into the CAF Champions League final, which will either go to Tunisia or Egypt as Esperance; who are the defending champions will be facing Al-Ahly the Egyptian team that pushed Nigeria’s hopeful Sunshine.

For the two finalists, the winner of the trophy will receive a cash prize of $1, 425,000, while the beaten finalist will go home with $950,000.

The cash prize of the Champions League is just a little short of the $1.5 million paid to the winners of the Africa Cup of Nations.

Zamalek of Egypt, who finished bottom of Group B, will receive $380,000, while it is believed that Etoile du Sahel of Tunisia, who was disqualified from the annual competition after crowd trouble in their group game against compatriots Esperance, will forfeit their own prize money.

Third-placed teams in their two mini-groups, Algeria’s Aso Chlef (Group A) and Berekum Chelsea of Ghana (Group B) are due $475,000.

 

Ex-international Mutiu Adepoju ditches Shooting Stars

Former Super Eagles player, Mutiu Adepoju who after his playing days decided to work with the shooting Stars sport club of Ibadan as their General Manager resigned from his position yesterday.

The 1994 African Nations Cup winner dropped a resignation letter at the club’s office yesterday and according to information reaching us, Mutiu will be leaving the sores of Nigeria for Spain on Thursday where he will be attending a two-week UEFA Pro Licence course which according to him is to re-validate the licence.

It can be said that the former Eagles player during his time of service to 3SC brought the Ibadan-based club back to the Premier league from their relegation and the club had maintained this position up until the Headmaster left the club yesterday.

We hear that Mutiu Adepoju was not happy with the treatment given him by the board of the club after he asked to re-apply for a new contract after the initial contract had expired and according to him it was a move by the board to pass down their message that his services were no longer required by the board and rather than be ridiculed, he decided to take the bull by the horn.

Rangers’ striker Ofoedu abandons club

Foster Chime the media officer of Enugu Rangers confirmed that Chikeluba Ofoedu has followed in the footsteps of James Okwuosa in seeking greener pastures abroad in the game of football as the Enugu Rangers top scorer Ofoedu has gone abroad for trials without permission, and the management of the club are livid with anger over this.

Information reaching the club states that the striker is believed to be in Turkey with a yet to be known club in the country, all this in the midst of Rangers final NPL game in the season against Sharks this weekend which will either make or mar the club’s position on the league table as league winners or not.

Ofoedu was signed from Enugu-based amateur side UNTH FC at the beginning of the season, and has gone on to become one of the biggest revelations in the league, having scored 12 goals so far and contributed several assists.

The player had previously been linked with a move to Norwegian giants Rosenberg and despite impressing during trials, the move stalled for undisclosed reasons.

Rangers still have a chance of winning the league even though their destiny are no longer in their hands,they however will be hoping to win the game against Sharks by a large score line while hoping their fellow title contenders Kano Pillars and Lobi Stars lose away to both Sunshine Stars and Kaduna United respectively.

A while ago, the captain of Rangers, James Okwuosa, abandoned Rangers during their Federation Cup quest to go on trials in South Africa, and despite earlier threats issued by the management of Rangers to sanction the player, he was eventually ‘rewarded’ with a lucrative three year deal with Ajax Cape Town.

This disciplinary laxity on the part of the management of Rangers now seems to be creating a domino effect of the Okwuosa situation, which may have ‘inspired’ Ofoedu to defy the club, irrespective of their seemingly empty threats to sanction the player.

Expectedly, the club have again threatened to sanction the player by stating that the balance of his sign on fees and other entitlements for the season will be withheld until the player gives them a reasonable explanation for his action.

Fans of the club will no doubt be waiting the see how this new episode of a sad drama will play out.

 

Sharks and Dolphins football clubs up for sale

NPL clubs; Rivers state based Sharks football club and Dolphins football club has been declared  for sale if the right offer is brought forward, the River state government said.

Rivers state government who is the sponsor of the two clubs and has opened up that the upkeep of both clubs is having serious strain financially on the Governor Rotimi  Amaechi’s administration, thus the reason for the sale and the governor concluded by saying any good offer brought will be looked at as his aim is to make the two football club a model in Nigerian football.