LEG Lagos Challenge Drags Newcastle, Cordoba, Other Foreign Soccer Academies To Nigeria
LEG Lagos Challenge (LLC) tournament, tagged ‘the festival of football academies’, is bringing the likes of Newcastle United Football Academy, Cordoba Soccer Academy, and host of other foreign football academies to Nigeria ahead of the maiden championship which holds in April at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere in Lagos.
Speaking at the pre-tournament world press conference held Tuesday in Lagos, LEG Lagos Challenge Director General, Hon Ladi Balogun stated that Newcastle Academy from England, Cordoba Soccer Academy and few other foreign academies were among the 10 registered for the upcoming event in Lagos.
“Because of the involvement of Lagos State Government and the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), coaches, scouts and football directors from various foreign clubs are showing interest to be part of the competition.
“Newcastle United Academy, two clubs academies from Spain, Cordoba Football Academy from Spain, including one club from Germany,” Balogun revealed.
“Apart from those ones we have mentioned, we also have Kwara Soccer Academy, including other academies across several states of the country that have registered so far for the competition.
“The annual championship targets participants of verifiable ages between 18 and 23 years. The inaugural edition will compose of 16 team format, drawn into four different groups. Ultimately, our aim is to create a youth-centric, sustainable football culture in a genuine effort to revive the passionate Nigerian sporting system.
“Our chief enabler and ‘Motivator-in-Chief’ is the indefatigable Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, who has demonstrated a strong passion for sports development as encapsulated in Project T.H.E.S.E philosophy of his administration.
“The maiden edition of LLC came to reality with the strong support of the Lagos State Sports Commission and the unflinching cooperation of the Lagos State Football Association, who believed in our vision, keyed into this genuine initiative, and approved the staging of the championship. We are organizing a local championship of international standard for global audience.”
Winner of the championship takes home a gold trophy, medals and cash reward, runner-up will also receive silver trophy, medals and cash rewards, while the third best team will get bronze trophy, medals and cash reward as well. Meanwhile, Most Valuable Player of the tournament will be named in honour of former Super Eagles captain and midfielder, Austin ‘Jay Jay Okocha.
Other prize awards like Highest Goal Scorer will be in honour of late Rashidi Yekini, Best Goalkeeper in honour of Peter Rufai, Best Behaved Team (Fair Play Award) in honour of Mutiu ‘Headmaster’ Adepoju, Best Referee in honour of Linus Mba, Best Coach of the tournament in honour of Coach Samson Siasia, while the LEG Star Team will be in honour of the sponsor.