Ilorin – The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) will inspect all four venues being proposed for home matches by clubs representing Nigeria in African competitions in 2017, a federation official said on Wednesday.
NFF’s Acting Director of Communications, Ademola Olajire, said in a statement that this was based on the agreement reached with the clubs at a meeting in Abuja on Wednesday.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the meeting was between NFF officials and officials of the four clubs, namely Rangers International, Rivers United, FC IfeanyiUbah and Wikki Tourists.
Olajire quoted NFF’s Director of Competitions, Bola Oyeyode, as saying none of the four stadia had been previously inspected and approved by the Confederation of African Football (CAF), the competitions’ organisers.
Oyeyode said this necessitated the need for NFF to inspect the venues well ahead of the continental competitions.
“So, the deliberations today (Wednesday) centred on match venues, stadium readiness, team preparation, team travel and accommodation, logistics, match officials’ travel and accommodation, communication with NFF and officials of the opposition team, safety, security and medical provisions,’’ the statement quoted him as saying.
It added that Oyeyode also briefed officials of the four clubs on the requirements of CAF.
Oyeyode further harped on the importance of being fully prepared in all the noted areas in order not to attract avoidable sanctions and unpleasant experiences during their campaigns.
NAN reports that Enugu-based NPFL champions Rangers International will fly the country’s flag in the CAF Champions League alongside runners-up Rivers United of Port Harcourt.
Also, Federation Cup winners FC IfeanyiUbah of Nnewi and League third place-finishers Wikki Tourists of Bauchi will campaign in the CAF Confederation Cup.
Rangers have proposed to make use of the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in Enugu for their home matches, while Rivers United are opting for the Yakubu Gowon Stadium in Port Harcourt.
On their part, Wikki Tourists decided on the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa Stadium in Bauchi, while FC IfeanyiUbah will host their home matches at the Ifeanyi Ubah International Stadium in Nnewi.
NAN reports that first round first leg matches in this year’s African club competitions will take place on the weekend of Feb. 9 to Feb. 11.