South-West Derby: May the True Stars Shine Today

  The star match of match-day 29 in the NPFL is undoubtedly the oriental derby between Enyimba (Aba) and Rangers (Enugu), which is live on Supersport at 4pm today. Both are the most successful teams in the history of the Nigerian league, with 7 and 6 trophies respectively. Although Rangers have endured a 32-year trophy drought, this season, they are well in the hunt for the league title to equal Enyimba’s record. Just below these[…]

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How the Court of Appeal Dismissed Giwa’s Case

I have just spent the past hour reading through the 53-page decision of the Court of Appeal in the infamous ‘Giwa case’ and thought to pen these thoughts. On 25th July, 2016 the Court of Appeal, sitting in Jos, overruled the decision of the Federal High Court, which had earlier relisted the case, leading to controversy as to the effect of that decision, with the Giwa group claiming that the decision recognized Chris Giwa as[…]

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What Nigerian Courts Should Learn from Piau’s Case

Challenges to decisions and rules of sports governing bodies are not new. Despite the well-entrenched principle of self-regulation, sports governing bodies occasionally have to defend their decision-making in courts of law. The trend in Nigeria, particularly involving football disputes, is indeed worrying. The frequency of court cases and the mostly interim judgments that arise from them often generate a sense of instability, distraction from the core process of administration and ultimately lower the brand appeal[…]

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NFF Becomes First in Africa to Adopt FIFA DTMS

The Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) has become the first FIFA member association in Africa to sign up for the FIFA Domestic Transfer Matching System (DTMS). Modeled after the international Transfer Matching System, the DTMS will help regulate and manage player transfers within the domestic league in an online system, which enhances efficiency and transparency. See more of the story on FIFA.com …

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Giwa & Co. – What the Court Actually Decided

From 8th April 2016, the news all over the place was that the Federal High Court (FHC), Jos Division had made an order nullifying the 30th September 2014 election of the NFF that brought the Amuju Pinnick-led board into office. This was followed by a public drama in which the Chris Giwa-led faction occasionally insisted on resuming office amid fears of a breakdown of law and order. About three weeks later, on 28th April 2016,[…]

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Understanding FIFA’s ‘No Court’ Rule

The ‘Giwa vs. Pinnick’ battle for the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) Presidency has resumed and resurrecting with it is an order of the Federal High Court, Jos Division, which set aside the NFF election of 30th September, 2014 that brought the Amaju Pinnick-led board into office. On 11th April, 2016, FIFA issued a letter to Mr. Pinnick – whom it recognizes as the President of the NFF – warning that the implementation of the court[…]

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Sunday Oliseh: Last Chance Saloon for Nigerian Coaches

With Sunday Oliseh expected to be unveiled as the new head coach of the Super Eagles of Nigeria, a lot of talk has centred on whether or not he is the right pick, given his lack of top-level coaching experience. Upon retirement, the former captain of the Super Eagles went on to acquire the highest coaching qualification available – the UEFA Pro Licence – held by the elite band of coaches qualified to manage any[…]

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NPFL: Understanding the 3-Year-Minimum-Contract Rule

A lot has been said about the three-year-minimum-contract rule being implemented in the Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL). Some have argued against it, while others have argued in favour of it. Whereas the aim of the rule is to enhance contractual stability and welfare of players, there are those who feel that it ties players down to contracts which clubs often fail to implement. Strangely enough, among the antagonists of this rule is the Association[…]

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Football Player Representation Seminar – Lagos, Nigeria, 5-6 February, 2015

Lagos, Nigeria is to host the 2nd edition of the ‘Football Player Representation Seminar’ on 5th and 6th February, 2015. The 1st edition took place in Johannesburg, South Africa on 26th and 27th November, 2014. Top on the agenda of the Seminar is discussion of the new FIFA Regulations on Working with Intermediaries, which upon coming into force on April 1, 2015 will significantly alter the current system of licensing of Player Agents. Some innovations under[…]

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Understanding the League Governance Structure in the NPFL: The LMC Model

  Introduction For the past couple of seasons, the Chairmen and Managers of the elite football clubs in Nigeria have – in addition to their on-field battles – been fighting to exclude the League Management Company (LMC) from the management and operation of the top-flight football league in Nigeria. This battle is based on what they deem to be their right to elect an Executive Board from amongst themselves to exclusively manage the league in[…]

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