Sports Minister, Sunday Dare came out of the ‘Soccer Temple’ Agege Stadium, Lagos, venue of the NWFL Super Four final at the weekend, convinced the women’s league has the potential of getting close to what obtains in the European and Asian Leagues.
An advocate of equality in the round leather game, Dare said he was delighted by the top standard displayed by Rivers Angels of Port Harcourt and Confluence Queens of Lokoja in the final match. And he believes that with adequate support, Nigerian women will begin to hold their own against the best footballers in the world.
“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 as there was no dull moment with the two teams exhibiting 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, however, “it is a bitter pill to swallow to see that the Nigeria Women Football League doesn’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.“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 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 can secure a very good one for the women’s league.”