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The Truth Behind Nigerians’ Fondness Of The English Premier League

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We all know that football is one of the most popular sports in the world, together with basketball. But as much as it is a big craze throughout Europe, it also is a phenomenon in some African countries, especially Nigeria.

For already fifteen years, five areas in Nigeria’s Kogi state have been celebrating the annual Arsenal Day. This is a two-day celebration that celebrates the Premier League-team, Arsenal FC.

To prove how big of a festivity this is, thousands of Nigerians wearing red and white jerseys sing, dance, and party together. Of course, these wouldn’t be complete without an Arsenal-themed cake.

Ilyas Abdulsalam, director of the Ebiraland Arsenal fans club, says that the reason why they have the annual Arsenal Day is to celebrate their idolized Arsenal players. He says that it is proof of how much Nigeria love the English Premier League.

Abdulsalam then refers to the league as the most popular domestic competition. One report states that there are over 250 million people in Sub-Saharan Africa that watch the Premier League yearly.

This makes the league have a very fast-growing audience and market, which ultimately converts to tons of financial benefits. Even Manchester United and Arsenal have their own commercial partnerships with popular Nigerian brands.

One of this is Airtel, a telecommunications company. Even the country has their own Premier League where 20 teams are playing in.

So why is Nigeria overly-fond of the Premier League? Ukan Idagbo, a die-hard Man United fan, answers that question.

He says that the answer is simple, and that is because the Premier League is the most popular and competitive league globally. Lagos, Nigeria is another proof of the Premier League’s immense popularity.

In the city, commercial buses bearing club stickers can be found everywhere. Even billboards featuring the brightest Premier League personalities are laden throughout the place.

Then there’s Lolade Adequyi, who says that the English Premier League is marketed as the best football league in the world. With this, one can say that the league can be compared to the NBA, which is dubbed as the best basketball league in the world.

But it’s not all about hype, as the fuzz is also because of the Nigerian players who are playing in the league. As of now, there are eight Nigerian players in the Premier League.

These are Alex Iwobi, Victor Moses, Kelechi Iheanacho and Wilfred Ndidi to name a few. To support this, another Chelsea fan named Austin Oke says that the league’s popularity also has to do with their fluency in the English language.

He says that their deep connection with the game is because they can understand what the commentators are saying. For now, Arsenal Day is the most popular fan-day celebration in Nigeria.

But because of the league’s uncontrollable growing popularity, it’s safe to assume that other club fan-days are going to pop up. Abdulsalam says that Man United, Chelsea, and Real Madrid fan clubs have started to take shape.

The top favorite team in Nigeria is Arsenal. This is despite the club’s seeming whirlwind in the previous years. Even the Gunners’ betting odds don’t coincide with their growing popularity as they’re on the 6th spot and have a 60/1 betting odds.

This shows that it’s not a matter of how good a team is, but it’s all about the marketing and which teams the Nigerian players are playing in. Take for example Manchester City who sits on top with strong 1/8 odds to become the outright winner of this season’s Premier League.

Manchester United sits on the second spot with 14/1 odds. And with Chelsea’s 18/1 odds nearing Man United, it can be expected that the team’s popularity in Nigeria might even overshadow Arsenal’s. This is very feasible especially that Nigerian Victor Moses plays as a wing-back for the team.

This is one of the reasons why more and more Nigerians decide to claim a free bet for a Premiere League wager from freebets.co.uk and other sports betting sites. They feel more connected to the game when they bet on their favorite teams and players.

And though Tottenham still doesn’t have a strong foothold in the African nation, it’s still expected that their 20/1 odds are enough to prove that they’re worthier to be celebrated than Arsenal. For those of you who don’t know, Arsenal has just beaten Tottenham in a surprising 2-0 victory.

So with all these being said, there’s no doubt that the English Premier League will continue to be a focal point of entertainment not only in Nigeria and the African continent but in other parts of the world as well.

Sourced From: Complete Sports Nigeria

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Cavani Gets Three-Game Ban, £100,000 Fine

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Uruguayan striker Edinson Cavani has been slammed with a three-match ban and £100,000 fine after he used the word ‘negrito’ in a social media post. Cavani sent the message to a friend after his match-winning performance against Southampton last month, but the FA decided it was discriminatory in nature and charged him with misconduct. The […]

The post Cavani Gets Three-Game Ban, £100,000 Fine appeared first on Complete Sports.

Sourced From: Complete Sports

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Football

Gernot Rohr Reveals Who Is Better Between Lionel Messi And Diego Maradona

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The head coach of the Nigerian national team played against the late Argentine legend when they were both in their prime, and he does not doubt that the Napoli icon has few equals

Manager Gernot Rohr admits that Argentina hero Diego Armando Maradona was one of the greatest players to grace the game, highlighting the late playmaker’s qualities with the ball at his feet.

While comparing Diego Maradona to his fellow Argentine great Lionel Messi, the Super Eagles handler insists that the Barcelona forward is better than the 1986 FIFA World Cup winner.

Maradona arrived in Europe in 1982 in a world-record transfer to Barcelona and spent two excellent years at Camp Nou before departing for Italy’s Napoli in another world record transfer fee of £6.9 million.

He was instrumental as Napoli claimed two Serie A titles, the UEFA Cup, the Coppa Italia, and the Supercoppa Italiana, during his seven-year stay at the club.

En route to lifting that UEFA Cup in 1989, Maradona’s Napoli duelled against Girondins Bordeaux – which had a certain Gernot Rohr as a fullback – in the last sixteen round of the old UEFA competition in December 1988.

Rohr maintains that encounter and a similar one with Maradona convinced him that the former Barcelona star was an incredible footballer.

“I was lucky enough to play him twice,” Rohr told German regional newspaper, Mannheimer Morgen.

“In 1983, he was even my direct opponent at the 100th anniversary of Girondins Bordeaux against Barcelona, ​​and then again in the 1988/89 UEFA Cup, which Maradona then won with SSC Napoli.

“He was a gifted footballer. Maradona was smart, didn’t run much, but his left foot sucked the ball.

“Unfortunately, he had to fight hard after football. Applied to today’s conditions, one could compare him to Lionel Messi.”

But when asked if Maradona was the greatest footballer of all time, the German tactician claimed that Messi was better than his celebrated compatriot.

“I have a lot of sympathy for Messi. He’s a bit better because he was also very fair within a team and to the opponent – and didn’t have to score a goal with his hand (laughs),” said the Super Eagles coach.

1986 World Cup winner Maradona died aged 60 after suffering a cardiac arrest at his home in Tigre, Buenos Aires, Argentina, in November 2020.

Sourced From: Soccernet.ng

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Premier League: Lookman On Target, Aina, Iheanacho In Action As Fulham Claim Away Win At Leicester 

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Ademola Lookman got on the score sheet as struggling Fulham secured a shock 2-1 win against Leicester City inside the King Power stadium in Monday night’s Premier League game, Completesports.com reports. In action for Fulham were Ola Aina and Tosin Adarabioyo who saw 90 minutes of action, while Kelechi Iheanacho was introduced on 70 minutes. […]

The post Premier League: Lookman On Target, Aina, Iheanacho In Action As Fulham Claim Away Win At Leicester  appeared first on Complete Sports.

Sourced From: Complete Sports

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Taiwo Awoniyi: Time To Cut Short The Dream And Leave Liverpool Permanently

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It has been five years since the former Golden Eaglets star joined the Reds, but he is not any closer to playing for Jurgen Klopp’s side

Taiwo Awoniyi has not played a single game since moving to Liverpool in 2015, and the Nigerian youth international says he seriously considered quitting the club permanently in the summer.

Awoniyi is still not eligible for a work permit in England as he hasn’t featured yet for the Nigeria senior national team. This situation has robbed him of the chance to play in the English Premier League.

A hero of Nigeria’s triumph at the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates and the 2015 African U20 Championship in Senegal, Awoniyi is yet to light up his career as expected.

The 23-year-old has had seven loan spells in clubs across the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and agreed to a temporary deal with Union Berlin in September for the entire 2020-21 season.

Awoniyi insists he retains the ambition of playing for the Reds, but he prefers to leave Liverpool for the opportunity to settle down somewhere else.

“It is my dream to play for Liverpool. But me playing for Liverpool has to do with getting my work permit,” Awoniyi told ESPN.

“Without it, there is no chance for me discussing about playing for Liverpool for now.

“This season was maybe a bit tough to make the decision because honestly, I was hoping to leave permanently.

“Liverpool have been great, they have been so supportive, and we always talk with the director and every time, they tell me to be patient.

“But the reason I discussed something permanent this season was just that I felt most loans I have been to have not really been the way I want it.

“And I felt like it happens that way because the loan players get less of an advantage than the players of their own club.

“That was what made me think, okay, maybe it’s time to find a home with my family.”

Awoniyi has featured seven times for Union Berlin in the Bundesliga this term, opening his goal account for the club in the 2-1 defeat of Cologne a fortnight ago.

Sourced From: Soccernet.ng

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