Daily Trust (Abuja)

17 December 2012

Nigeria: Coaches Commend NFF as U13 Championship Begins

Coaches at the ongoing National U-13 Championship in Abuja have commended the Aminu Maigari led NFF board for encouraging football development from the grassroots.

Niger State U-13 team's head coach, El-shaffee Mohammed says the NFF board is on the right part.

"This is a great developmental programme for our football because, it develops football from the grassroots.

"I want to tell you that Niger state has already embrace this competition, right now we have a product that is already playing in the National U-17 team and it is through the organisation of the National U-13 Championship." Elshaffe said.

Similarly, FCT Coach, Usman Haruna Ilerika, also praised the NFF board for its consistency in grassroots football development .

"I think it is commendable that since 2008, the NFF has consistently turned to the grassroots especially children in primary and secondary schools to get young footballers who can in future do this country proud, but majorly I think the NFF should give the boys more international exposure." Ilerika advised.

The Chief Coach of Ekiti State U-13 team, Tope Akinbade, also added that he hopes to have some of his players picked for the national U-13 camp this year.

"Let me be factual with you, the Aminu Maigari led NFF board is doing their best in terms of youth sports development and you can see the results, the Female U-20 team played good football at the world Cup while the Golden Eaglets that have qualify for the AYC are probably the youngest U-17 team Nigeria has ever presented for that kind of competition.

"For us in Ekiti State our target is to have the highest number of players in the U-13 camp this year." Akinbade added.

Round-robin

Meanwhile, organisers of the one week long National U-13 Championship said the competition is now going to be a round robin one, with the teams on ground divided into two groups A & B.

Only eight teams, Sokoto, Edo, Kaduna, Imo, FCT, Ogun, Niger and Ekiti State out of the 12 invited teams have shown up for the competition.

The aim of the competition is to select the best 25 players that will be invited to the National U-13 Team.

Results of matches played so far at the National U-13 Championship, at the FIFA Goal Project of the Abuja National Stadium:

Results:

Sokoto 0 - 7 Edo

Kaduna 3 - 0 Imo

FCT 3 - 1 Ogun

Niger 1 - 1 Ekiti

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