Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Super Eagles To Return To Lagos After a Decade As Teslim Balogun Stadium Hosts Lesotho AFCON Qualifier

Ten years after last hosting an international match, the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, Lagos will again come alive as the edifice is set to host another international encounter.

The Teslim Balogun Stadium will be hosting the Super Eagles versus the Crocodiles of Lesotho in the Africa Cup of Nations qualifier billed for March 30.

To ensure that the facilities are in order, Nigeria senior football team manager, Gernot Rohr yesterday came on an inspection of the facilities and was satisfied with what he saw.

The Franco-German hailed the state of the dressing rooms in spite of the fact that one or two things still needed to be in place but berated the fact that there would be no crowd to watch the encounter due to the coronavirus pandemic that is ravaging the world.

Though the former Bayern Munich player complained about the grass which he said was overgrown but was quickly reminded that the match was about seven weeks away and that the grass would be trimmed as the game draws nearer.

“The match is about seven weeks away and the grass would be ready within the next three weeks. What you are seeing in place is about 15 weeks of work. We tried about five types of grasses before we arrived at this, which is one of the best in the world,” Chairman, Lagos State Sports Commission, Sola Aiyepeku explained.

“By bringing the Super Eagles back to Lagos, we will also be boosting the economy of the state, especially the communities closer to the stadium, Aiyepeku said.
The Lagos State Sports Commission Chairman indeed expressed thanks to the state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu for his unflinching support for sports development in the state.

For the first vice president, Nigeria Football Federation, NFF, Seyi Akinwunmi, there is no negotiation on where the Super Eagles Lesotho match would be played.

“We’ve been working on the Teslim Balogun Stadium’s facilities long before now. NFF President, Amaju Pinnick and I have inspected the facilities before now and we’re satisfied with what his on the ground,” Akinwunmi said.

Reacting to Rohr’s complaint about the grass, Akinwunmi said no matter what you put in place the coach would react like that as a way of challenging you to do better.

“He reacted the same way about Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, in Uyo, Akwa Ibom and the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium, Benin. That seems to be his style, the first Vice President of NFF noted.

With the hosting of the Super Eagles-Lesotho match, Lagos is hoping to show the hospitality of the state.
The Super Eagles will host Lesotho on March 30, a victory will ensure that Nigeria book a place in the 2022 AFCON in Cameroon with a game to spare.

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