Onigando of Igando in Lagos State, Oba Lasisi Gbadamosi has commended Globacom for harnessing and nurturing young football talents in West Africa through its Soccer Academy, describing the step as 'very proactive.'
The Monarch gave the commendation while receiving one of the evictees from the academy, 17-year old Daniel Okechukwu, a resident of Igando Town in Lagos State who was one of the three goalkeepers initially selected for the Academy.
Oba Gbadamosi said the catch-them-young programme of the Academy would hone the raw skills of the burgeoning footballers who he predicted would become super stars tomorrow with the training being received at the Academy. He advised other corporate organizations to emulate Globacom in sports development and other key sectors of the economy.
Meanwhile, the evictee, Daniel Okechukwu thanked Globacom for treating him like a celebrity by taking him before the traditional ruler of his area.
He said he learnt a lot of skills and strategies from coaches at the academy and expressed hope that he would one day play for the national team. While at the academy, Okechukwu had the rare opportunity of being trained by two UEFA Grade 'A' Coaches from the youth arm of the popular Manchester United football club in the UK, and the technical team of the academy led by ex-international, Victor Ikpeba.
Over 7,000 youths participated in the screening exercise done in Nigeria, Ghana and Republic of Benin. Five players were evicted from the academy during the first eviction exercise. 16 finalists will emerge at the end of the exercise and they will go on a training tour of the Manchester United Soccer Schools in Carrington, England as well as enjoy the G-Bam Scholarship of N750,000 each as part of the prizes. In addition, one of the players who will emerge as the Most Valuable Player will earn N5 million, while the remaining 15 will go home with N1 million each.