Remo Stars in great comeback as MTN/ NPFL/LaLiga U15 tournament begins
Defending Champions, Remo Stars U15 team, made a great comeback on the opening day of 2023 MTN/NPFL/LaLiga U15 tournament, which started on Thursday at Ikenne, Ogun State.
The young ambassadors from Remo had conceded two first half goals to Lobi Stars U15 team of Makurdi, but fought back to win 3-2.
Kenneth Mshi struck twice for Lobi Stars. In the second half, Emmanuel Adeboye scored from the spot to reduce the deficit for Remo Stars, and some minutes later, parity was restored as Yusuf equalized scores at 2-2. Seun Akanji’s acrobatic strike late in the game secured the victory for Remo Stars. Akanji’s goal thrilled the spectators, including the Chairman of Remo Stars, Kunle Soname, as well as representatives of the various sponsors.
Speaking with The Guardian, Soname described the performance by Remo Stars as wonderful. “These young stars just reminded me of Atlanta ’96 Olympics Games, where our boys came from behind to beat Brazil. I almost thought victory would be impossible for Remo Stars in this game after conceding two first-half goals. I salute the young lads fro Lobi Stars for the good game.”
Before the first match of the competition, a press conference was held, with the management of communication giants, MTN Nigeria, vowing to sustain the sponsorship of the Nigeria Premier Football League (NPFL) Clubs U15 tournament.
The Manager, Sponsorship and Promotions, MTN Nigeria, Mrs. Njide Ken-Odogwu, who represented the Chief of Marketing MTN Nigeria, Adia Sowho, said the tournament has come to stay.
“In MTN we are glad and happy with the sponsorship of the tournament in partnership with LaLiga. We are also impressed with the state-of-the-art facilities here in Ikenne, and we believe it will help to bring the dreams of the young players to reality.
“We will continue with the sponsorship of the tournament for the development of the game of football in the country,” she said.
Representative of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Mr. Ganiyu Majekodunmi, who stood in for the NFF President, Ibrahim Gusau, urged the players to make good use of their participation at the tournament.
LaLiga Ambassador in Nigeria, former Super Eagles player, Muti Adepoju stressed that LaLiga decided to partner MTN in the tournament because of the abundant talents in Nigeria.
Adepoju advised the players and coaches to make good use of the opportunity given to them to exhibit their skills.
On his part, Head of Communications, NPFL, Harry Iwuala, commended the sponsors and partners of the tournament, saying that it has provided the young players an avenue to achieve their dreams in the profession.
“This tournament started in 2016, and it has continued to turn out good football players. It has helped in the development of the game in the country,” he said.
Iwuala urged football administrators to emulate the management of Remo Stars by building sports facilities for the youths and football in the country.
“We thank MTN, LaLiga, ValueJet and all our partners for this tournament, and we are very impressed with what has been achieved in the past seven years,” Iwuala stated.
A total of 16 teams are participating in this year’s edition.
The organisers presented certificates to coaches, who took part in three-day coaching course before of the tournament. Among the coaches was former Super Eagles and Julius Berger of Lagos striker, Ishola Shuaibu.
Meanwhile, in other matches played yesterday, Enyimba defeated Bendel Insurance U15 team 2-1, while Plateau United beat Bayelsa United 4-2. Shooting Stars of Ibadan won 1-0 against Rangers of Enugu.
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