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We are going to accommodate more runners for 9th Lagos City Marathon – Yusuf Ali

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The General Manager of the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon, one of the biggest marathon races in Africa, Yusuf Alli, has disclosed that: “the 9th edition of the race, in February 2024, will be hosting more runners in the 42km and 10km races.”

He said at the weekend in Lagos that, the last time the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon hosted a large number of runners was before the outbreak of the Covid 19 virus in 2019.

“For the 9th edition which comes up next year in February, the organisers of the race, Nilayo Sports Management, is determined to host a large number of runners while accommodating those Nigerians and foreign runners who are very eager to participate in both the 42km and the 10km races.

“We are ready for this and we are going to do it in a big way, with all the trappings of the regulations of World Athletics, especially as the Lagos City Marathon is a Gold Label Elite Marathon.

“Don’t forget that the last time we had a very large number of runners was in 2019 when we had the Silver Label Race, but now that we have the Elite Label Race. The stakes are higher and we shall do everything differently. So, we are looking forward to the 9th edition of the race in February 2024.

“And don’t forget, the decision to have more runners, which means a vast increase in the number of participants will be registered in both the 42kg and 10kg races.”

The General Manager noted that the organisers of the biggest marathon races in Africa, Nilayo Sports Management Limited, decided to increase the number of runners because of the huge requests made by local and international runners who believed the COVID-19 statutory restriction policies in line with the World Athletics and International Olympic Committee regulations in 2019, had stopped them from participating in the marathon. But today, the coast is clear and they can participate.

Alli revealed that the World Athletics and Association of International Marathons and Distance Races (AIMS) are excited that the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon will by next year return to having a larger number of runners for the full race.

Alli added that, with the commitment of the organisers, Nilayo Sports Management Ltd, the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon remains the first race to win a World Athletics Bronze Label in Africa after just two editions and the first in the world to win the prestigious Silver Label after four editions.

“Last year, World Athletics gave us the Elite Road Race Label, which today has made us one of the most sought-after Elite Label races in the world. And in terms of prize money, we rank among the top 10 in the world and in the number of participants, we are top five in the world.

A Kenyan, Edwin Kibet Koech, won the eighth edition of the Access Bank Lagos City Marathon 2023 tagged “Push the Limit” at a time of 2 hours 14 minutes 6 seconds. He went home with a cash prize of $50,000. Ethiopia’s Alemenseh Guta won the women’s race for the second time, the first in 2018, at a time 2:40:42.

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Nigeria Premier League

Eyimba FC International on expansionist mission- Ekwueme

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Nigerian professional football league and continental soccer record holders, Eyimba football club fc of Aba has commenced the

Nigerian professional football league and continental soccer record holders, Eyimba football club fc of Aba has commenced the implementation of an expansionist idea that would spread the club franchise, further past its current torrents, the club Sporting Director, ex intetnational , Ifeanyi Ekwueme has disclosed.

Ekwueme speaking in Kano last Tuesday,.further revealed that the club management under the pilot of Atlanta 96, Olympics football gold medalist, Kanu Nwankwo has embarked on the implementation of a newly designed development template that would stampede the influence of the club franchise on Nigerian, African and international football climes.

He said, Eyimba fc is a trademark that has excelled over time, Kanu Nwankwo regime currently at the helms of affairs at the club is building on the heroic achievements of the club by resorting to building bridges across Nigeria and beyond.

Ekwueme said ” we have signed partnership that involves exchange programmes, we are committed to coaches development mini and major projects

He further said ” we now have the requisite development structures, with our now in place youth football and semi professional talent development programmes , this is vital and critical.

” Eyimba is not a stagnant or zero football brand, we are a broad football brand, that is why, we are committed to partnerships that are results oriented and have them spread across Nigeria and extend same to the continent and beyond.

He averred that though there are challenges, the current leadership of the club is focused and committed towards surmounting the hurdles and posed to take the club to the zenith of club side football, where Eyimba fc is rightly believed to belong to.

Ekwueme appealed to the fans and their partners to keep faith with the Eyimba fc brand , stating that the club has witnessed enviable improvements in the area of football coorporate administration that he said is now yielding dividends and would continue to help the Aba football warlords to improve in the delivery of mandated club football services and business divdends expected by all stakeholders.

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Nigeria Premier League

Lagos State FA Congratulates Madiba, Inter Lagos, Ikorodu City, On NNL Play-offs Tickets

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The Lagos State Football Association ably led by Hajji Gafar Liameed, has congratulated the trio of Lagos State based football clubs, Madiba

The Lagos State Football Association ably led by Hajji Gafar Liameed, has congratulated the trio of Lagos State based football clubs, Madiba FC, Inter Lagos and Ikorodu City, for qualifying for the NNL Super 8 payoffs.

In the press statement, Hajji Gafar Liameed described the qualification of the teams, as remarkable and very commendable.

“Lagos State Football Association, the stakeholders and indeed, all lovers of the game are very happy over the feats of these teams, and of course, what it portends for the development of the game in Lagos State.

“As we earnestly look forward to big time and top level football matches in Lagos State in the next season, Lagos FA, shall continue to give technical and every other necessary supports to all clubs, for the benefits of game in the state.”

The board of the Lagos State Football Association, also expresses its profound appreciation to the Lagos State Government and its agencies, including the Lagos State Sports Commission, for providing the enabling environment for social activities and particularly, football to thrive in the state.

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Nigeria Premier League

Stormers FC will return to NNL soonest, Olopade Assures

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The Chairman / proprietor of Stormers Sports Club of Abeokuta, Chief Bukola Olopade, has promised that with proper restructuring, planning and complete dedication of the players and coaches of the team, the relegated Nigeria National League club will return to the professional league cadre, sooner than expected.

Stormers SC, at the end of the concluded NNL 2023/2024 season were relegated to the lower Nationwide League after ammassing a meagre 24 points in 22 matches in the Group A of the NNL.

The team’s below par NNL outing only saw them winning 7 matches, lost 12 and drew three games, only good enough for the bottom third position in a league of 12 teams.

Stormers SC scored 16 and conceded 10 goals, a performance not good enough to keep the team in the professional league, when compared with the NNL Group A Champions, Madiba FC, that finished with 40 points with the same number of matches in the league, won 18 games, lost 6 and drew 6.

Olopade, a former Commissioner of Youth and Sports in Ogun State, stated that, by all standards, Stormers SC’s performance was not befitting enough and he doesn’t have any option than to make positive changes in the team that would lead them to greatness.

Olopade said on Monday in his office in Lagos that: “The relegation of Stormers SC from the professional NNL to the amateur Nationwide, is failure on the part of the technical crew and the players.”

He noted that, with the new plan for the club ahead of the 2024/2025 campaign, he would ensure Stormers Sports Club return to the NNL sooner than anyone expects. Adding that :”The goal of the team is to get promoted back to the NNL and in record time step up to the premier league and play prominently in the Nigeria Professional Football League. I believe strongly this is possible with hard work and investment in young players who will believe their future is in the team.”

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