After watching the grand finale of the Nigeria Women Premier League Super 4 at the ‘Soccer Temple’ Agege Stadium, Lagos at the weekend, the Sports Minister, Sunday Dare, said he was convinced the women’s league will go very far with the potential of getting close to what obtains in the women’s European Leagues and those in Asia.
Sunday Dare, expressed his delight at the top standard evident in the final match between Rivers Angels of Port Harcourt and Confluence Queens of Lokoja.
“It’s very difficult to see two balanced teams play in a cup final, especially in women’s football. I am surprised this was the situation at the Agege Stadium, Lagos, on Sunday.
“I was entertained and there was no dull moment as the two teams exhibited excellent understanding of the game of football. The match could have gone either way, one of the attributes of a great league. And we saw all that in the final of the NWPL Super 4.”
The Sports Minister added in an interview after the game, that, “it was a bitter pill to swallow to see that the Nigeria Women Football League don’t have sponsors to complement their efforts.
“With the 90 minutes total football I watched at the Agege Stadium in the final of the Nigeria Women’s Premier League, the only way to get the gender football to its desired standard is to strife very hard to ensure the women’s league board headed by the workaholic Chairperson, Aisha Falode, gets the desired sponsorship.
“By so doing, we shall engage top corporate companies in Nigeria to sponsor the league in a partnership that would see the players, officials and the league board be involved in true administration of professional football.”
He added: “It’s incomplete to say we are playing professional women’s league when the league in itself is not professional in vital areas like sponsorship. From what I have seen, the the Nigeria Women Premier League is almost there, left for the desired sponsorship. And with hard work on the side of the Sports Ministry, we should be able to secure a very good one for the women’s league.” He noted that, “the drive to get sponsorship for the NWPL is a task that must be achieved.”
The Sports Minister believes strongly that, if the women’s league becomes truly professional with top flight sponsorship, the country’s national soccer teams, the Super Falcons, Super Falconets and the Flamengos, will become more formidable and better than what they were some years ago.”
Sunday Dare, commended the selfless works of the Aisha Falode-led board of the NWFL and urged them not to relent in their drive to make women’s football better in Nigeria. The quality of a country’s league will surely reflect on the international rating of the national teams,” the Sports Minister said.