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LMC plans to end Nigerian firms’ sponsorship of European clubs 


Ajani Ibrahim of 3SC tries to outwit Heartland’s Doyani Olawale during their Week 22 Glo League game in Oba… last weekend.

Ajani Ibrahim of 3SC tries to outwit Heartland’s Doyani Olawale during their Week 22 Glo League game in Oba… last weekend.

The League Management Company (LMC) has revealed that it would work with the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and the National Sports Commission (NSC) to ensure that firms operating in the country stopped sponsoring foreign clubs.

The plan, according to the LMC, is to push the Federal Government and the National Assembly to enact a law that will make it mandatory for Nigerian companies entering into sponsorship deals with European clubs to pay some percentage of the net worth of the deal to the domestic league.

Speaking at the inaugural Business School workshops, which held at the Pan Atlantic University on Tuesday, LMC Chairman, Mallam Shehu Dikko, also re-echoed the body’s position at the recent World Leagues Forum inaugural meeting in London, which sought a percentage of European Leagues’ broadcast and other commercial partnerships deals secured from Nigerian organisations for the airing of live games and other activations in the territory.

He lamented that investable funds that would have accelerated the development of football in the country are being channeled to foreign Leagues/club deals while the domestic league and clubs are left to struggle.

“Our biggest challenge is the struggle for the hearts of our fans and the proliferation of European football on television and promotion of foreign clubs contents by Nigerian companies. The intrusion of these broadcasts has made it more expensive to go to the stadium as just about N50 can get the average fan into a viewing center to see the foreign league and we are saying they should pay development grants in the forms of solidarity payments to us as they do to the lower leagues in their country,” argued the LMC boss.

His position was supported by the three Guest Speakers, Dr. Jim Pulcrano, a visiting Professor and member EMBA Teaching Team, Mr. Kelvin Roberts, Editorial Director, Sports Business Group and Robert Matsauki, former Technical Director of Association of National Olympic Commissions of Africa (ANOCA).

Roberts acknowledged that European football is devastating the development of football in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, saying, “the position of the LMC is reasonable and it is something that could be put on the table and negotiated but it is also important that you identify opportunities in the industry and utilize them”.

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  • Omoba1

    These companies also sponsor the league too. The point is make yourself more attractive and sponsors will come

  • Andy Andrew

    There should be massive investment in our local league and players. This would make our league attractive to Africans and others. As much as I see the enormous supports for European leagues and teams by our people, I cannot see that these European teams or uefa is doing anything tangible for our people and the game in these parts, not even doing pre-season friendly matches with any of our teams to reward the huge following they have here. So it is well overdue that such sponsorship should stop immediately. Our follow follow don do. They don’t even have any credible football program in Nigeria yet, we fight hard to support their teams as if our life depends on it. They don’t even accord our players the respect and signing fees they really deserve, check out Onazi’s terms for a start.

  • daniel ogbovoh

    The problem with our league is the same problem with our society as a whole, were we think if it’s foreign is always better and we all must have it. It’s a shame that our people pride themselves about how much they know about the EPL, they even proudly tell the rest of us the teams they support and follow in the EPL, including highly placed elected public officials like governors, senators and even the chairman of our football association. The media including print and electronic are even worse whereby they devote 80-90% of their allotted space and time to promoting the EPL to the detriment of our local league. Just imagine if the english people did not support their league where will the EPL be today?
    We as a people need to change our attitude and support our league. I remember with pride the days i used to sneak out of the boarding house on weekends to ogbe stadium to watch Bendel insurance play against other great nigerian teams, i thiink we can still revive those beautiful days again by investing massively in the development of our local league and by extension all the surrounding local industries that will benefit from this investments.

  • Aba bello

    What an irony! They are calling on corporate Nigerian companies to come on board and sponsor the local league but I remember MTN was shoved aside when they worn the bid to sponsor the league. They left the league for Globalcom and decided to introduce a nock-out challenge cup called MTN Cup but yet was not allow because globalcom threatened to take them to court claiming the right to the intire Nigerian football

    • Hemenseter Butu

      Not only is your analogy flawed it completely misses the point. Globacom sponsoring the league doesn’t prevent other sponsors, remember Barclays sponsors the EPL and so does Glo with the Nigerian League, Coca-Cola sponsors the league cup, Milo sponsors also and so on. The issue is how to get substantial viewership for our league and stop feeling entitled all the time

      • Aba bello

        Posted: 18 December 2010
        Club Owners boss happy with MTN Sponsorship deal
        Chairman of Club Owners in the Nigeria Premier League, David Suleiman says he is happy with the new sponsorship deal between MTN and NPL.

        Suleiman who spoke yesterday from Minna said the sponsorship is the best thing to happen to the Premier League after the problem of last season when there was no money for the clubs. “We want to commend the board of NPL and the Chairman, Davidson Owumi for the effort to get the Premier League on the right track. “We are all happy in the club owner’s forum. This is a good thing for us because we have really suffered when there was no money for the clubs last season. “The coming of MTN will greatly improve the game in the country. You can be sure that there will be great motivation for the players to do their best, the Chairman of Niger Tornadoes said. The club owner’s boss added: “We are happy and the fact that the Premier League was able to attract a sponsor like MTN shows there are great potentials in the Nigeria Premier League.” Meanwhile, majority of the clubs owners are not happy that there are moves to scuttle the deal by some powerful people. They noted that for anybody to think of putting pressure on anybody to reject the MTN deal shows some people don’t like the Premier League to grow in the country.

        From my own opinion; globalcom sponsorship of the league is only on the pages of newspapers, they do not give the NPL the full sponsorship money, the little that is given is used to settle emoluments of referees and board members and what ever is left at the end of the season is shared among clubs, which is a pittance. When NPL wants to void the contract with globalcom, Ghana must go bags to board members and NFF makes them sing a different tune. The NPL will not progress until MTN and other Telecom companies (globalcom competitors) are allowed to sponsors the league as they are transparent and will request accountability and a breakdown of how their sponsorship money is spent.

        Let me remind you again; some years back, MTN worn the right to sponsor the league but lost out because of globalcom political connection, they then try to introduce a nock-out competition called MTN CUP but Globalcom threatened them with court order claiming; they owned the right to the intire Nigerian football. They, Glo wanted to stop AIT Nigeria football award in 2009.

        I am only calling for multiple sponsors for the local league and for Globalcom to stop taking advantage of the corrupt NFF in stoping their competitors in the telecom companies from coming onboard

        If multiple sponsorships are working in South Africa and elsewhere, why cant they work in Nigeria? Sport analysts have blamed it on the inefficiency of the football house and corruption. They argue that the inability of the football house in Nigeria to run football professionally and transparently, without political bottleneck, greatly undermines the prospects of the game in Nigeria. What the private sector craves for is a measure of excellence, a measure of transparency.

  • Aba bello

    I have lost hope in the new NFF chair man (Amaju Pinick) I thought he would do something about the enslave contracts with globalcom. How can a sane person package the whole Nigerian football and sell it to globalcom for a peanut. Take a look at South African league, there are the ABSA premier league with price money of 10 million Rand (close to one million dollars) and if the winner topped the league tables from the beginning of the season to the end, another 4.5 million Rand would be added to the 10 million price money making a total of 14.5 million Rand. In addition to that, each of the 16 clubs in the league will receive a monthly grant of one million Rand every month ( yearly totall of 12 million rand for each club). There are also knockout competitions; (MTN 8 for teams that finish the season in top eight : price money; 8 million Rand for the winner) (NEDBANK CUP with price money of 6 million Rand for the winning club) ( TELKOM KNOCKOUT with price money of 4.2 million Rand for the winning club). So please what’s up with Nigeria? Can the couroupt NNF and Globalcom allow others to come on board and sponsor our football? Why is no one talking? Why are Nigerian journalists quiet? Some years back MTN came onboard but were frustrated by Globalcom. They left the league for globalcom and wanted to introduce a knockout competition called MTN CUP but we’re ones again frustrated by couroupt NNF and Globalcom. Take a look at Glo premier league matches! and how about the clubs; no academies, no young players