Stallions FC of Nasarawa-Eggon have won the 2020/21 Nasarawa State Football Association Premier League.
A goal at each half of an entertaining finale ensured the Nasarawa-Eggon-based grassroots side ended the game with an unreplied two goals cushion against Pioneers FC of Keffi at the Lafia City Stadium on Tuesday afternoon, thereby picking an automatic ticket to play in the division two of Nigeria’s third tier league, the Nationwide League One, with the runners-up billed to play in the division three of same league category.
Thirty-two clubs drawn from across the State split into four groups participated in the abridged format league.
Critical Government and Sports stakeholders attended the grand finale of the competition amidst large crowd turnout with the Executive Governor of Nasarawa State, His Excellency, Engr. Abdullahi Sule, represented by Commissioner-Nominee, Hon. Kwanta Yakubu leading the Government delegation including immediate past Commissioner for Youth and Sports Development, Hon. Othman Bala Adam, while Nigeria Football Federation’s Head of Technical and Development Committee and Niger State FA Chairman, Comrade Ahmed Yusuf Fresh, led big wigs from the apex Nigeria football body, including Nigeria’s U-20 National Team Coach, Ladan Bosso, while Chairman of Nasarawa United FC, Chief Barr. Isaac Danladi, was represented by the Club’s Team Manager, Solomon Babanjah.
Among the award recipients are His Excellency, Engr. Abdullahi Sule(Executive Governor, Nasarawa State); His Excellency. Dist. Senator Umar Tanko Al-Makura(former Governor & serving Senator, National Assembly); Hon. Kwanta Yakubu (Commissioner-Nominee); Hon. Salihu Musa Iyimoga(Chairman, House Committee on Youth and Sports, State Assembly); Hon. Daniel Ogah Ogazi(State Legislator representing Kokona-East Constituency); Hon. Aliyu Bello(Secretary, APC, Nasarawa State); and His Royal Highness, Sylvester Ayi(Abaga Toni, Garaku), while Chairman of Benue State Football Association and Executive Committee Member, NFF, Hon. Chief Margaret Icheen was given a Special Recognition Certificate.
Ahmed Yusuf Fresh was recognized by the leadership of Lafia Youth Progressive Forum headed by Shehu Ibrahim as ‘THE HERO OF OUR TIME’.
Hon. Kwanta Yakubu: “I feel grateful to be honoured by the Alkali-led Board of the State FA.
“On behalf of my principal, the Executive Governor, I wish to assure the FA and State of my continuous support towards the growth and development of our local talents and sports for optimum performance.
“As a Government, we will continue to provide enabling environment for talents discovery and nurturing so our youth can compete favourably with their contemporaries in other climes.”
Hon. Hon Salihu Musa Iyimoga: “I feel happy for this honour bestowed upon me today.
“It came to me as a surprise. I appreciate the organizers for finding me worthy of this recognition.
“I will continue to do my best for the betterment of our dear state, especially the youth constituency where I belong.”
HRH. Sylvester Ayi(Abaga Toni): “As you can see, we have wonderful talents in Nasarawa State and I am glad that at the end of the game, everyone is happy – that’s the spirit of sportsmanship.
“The players on display today are but a tip of the iceberg. Expect more talents on display in subsequent events as there abound arrays of productive talents in the State.”
“I want to thank the FA for selecting me among the award recipients today. I will use this honour to justify the confidence reposed in me by working harder to improve football and sports development in our dear State through my Foundation.
“I will also ensure concrete collaborations with members of the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, SWAN, Nasarawa State Chapter, to enable us attain greater heights together.”
Aloko Flash-Man(General Manager, Nasarawa Broadcasting Service, NBS): “Congratulations to the winners and runners-up for giving up a good fight.
“I urge them to represent the State well at the Nationwide League.
“May I also use this medium to call on well-meaning individuals in the State, especially areas where these two clubs are based, to give support to the new State’s representatives to excel when hostilities commence at the national level.”
Speaking earlier, Vice Chairman, Nasarawa State Football Association and Chairman, League Organizing Committee, Haladu Akwashiki, appreciated those who made the competition a success, promising to improve on subsequent editions.
“We want to appreciate everyone who made this competition a success.
“The media did a wonderful job in giving massive publicity throughout the duration of the league and we are more than grateful to them.
“We want to assure of better packages for participating teams in future editions of the league.”