The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) said on Tuesday in Abuja that it would soon sign a sponsorship deal with Oando, a leading integrated energy group in the country.

The Chairman of NFF’s Marketing Committee, Emeka Inyama, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the move was in line with the determination of the current NFF leadership to consolidate its football development drive.

Inyama said that when signed, the deal would boost youth football development and capacity building programmes of the federation, which Zenith Bank Plc recently keyed into.

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“In the past five years, no new sponsor has come into the Nigeria football; this is evident and it’s because of the economy.

“It’s because of the image that the Nigeria football has in the eyes of the sponsors of a controversial place, perhaps a corrupt house and all that; so, we need to cleanup all those things.

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“We just got Zenith on, Oando is coming onboard any moment from now; they have been packaged and lined up, but I said let’s build the right foundation.

“They are now saying that we are sending referees abroad; they are seeing the result in the quality of officiating especially in the premier league, people are coming back to the stands.

“There are natural factors that must induce sponsorship and until you establish the right foundation, sponsorship is not donation, it will not come.“

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NAN reports that Zenith Bank Plc recently signed a partnership agreement with NFF for a comprehensive programme aimed at developing under-13 and under-15 national football teams.

According to NFF, the plan is in furtherance of efforts to raise a reservoir of talented young men and women footballers to always supply players to all categories of the national team. (NAN)

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