Female Football Competition: Mrs Ambode rewards winner with N500, 000

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Lagos – The wife of Lagos State Governor, Mrs Bolanle Ambode, has rewarded Safe and Sound FC, the winners of the maiden “Mrs Bolanle Ambode Female Football Competition’’ in Epe with N500, 000.

Bolanle Ambode

Segun Osinaike, the Chairman of Epe Division Football Association (DFA), announced the reward at the end of the tournament on Saturday night in Epe.

Ambode watched the final of the competition sponsored by Abiodun Tobun, representing Epe Constituency I at the Lagos State House of Assembly with other dignitaries.

NAN reports that Ambode, who also decorated the triumphant team, refused to make any comment after the competition before she left the venue.

The tournament held at Salako Playing Ground, Epe, with hundreds of youths and various leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in attendance.

Safe and Sound FC defeated Teach Them Soccer 2-1 to clinch the trophy.

The sponsor, Tobun, told NAN: “Sincerely, I am happy and feeling fulfilled. Catching these girls from the grassroots and nurturing them will save our society from many vices.

“We can keep our children off the street and get them engaged with reasonable things. This kind of thing will save our girls from what are immoral. This is the beginning, we are moving to the next level.

“I can see these girls playing professional football and representing Lagos State and Nigeria as a whole. One of them has been invited to the U-20 female team.

“We have picked the first 11 that will be representing this division and I promise we will nurture them. We want others to emulate this and encourage women to play football so that we develop with the advanced countries.’’

On the reason for naming the tournament after Mrs Ambode, Tobun said that he did so to honour her as the number one woman in the state.

The lawmaker, who observed that adequate attention had not been given to female football in the country, said that the development motivated him to bankroll development of female football at the grassroots.

In his remark, Mr Muyiwa Jimoh, the Deputy Majority Leader at the Assembly, said that sports could be used to encourage youth development.

Jimoh, who commended the sponsor, said that female football needed encouragement.

“As we develop them in sports, we should also develop their brain. Female football is just taking its gravity, I salute the courage of Hon. Abiodun Tobun for this,’’ he said.

According to him, great footballers of the world are also successful in their chosen careers, urging the young football talents to read widely.

Also, Segun Olulade, representing Epe Constituency II at the Assembly, called on meaningful Nigerians and corporate organisations to engage youths with regular football competitions.

“Government alone cannot do it, I think corporate organisations should help the government to engage our youths meaningfully in all sports, not only in football,’’ Olulade said.

The DFA chairman said that “we have been able to discover many talents from the group stage of the tournament.

“We have no fewer than 22 female players that can represent the state at any tournament now.’’

Earlier, Papa Soccer Angels defeated Springsoca Academy 3-1 through penalty to win the bronze after their match ended 2-2 during regulation time.

Other teams that participated in the tournament are Iderade Amazon’s, Ajagunobe Babes, Net Breakers Girls and Shashu Queens.

The Coach of Papa Soccer Angels, Hassan Musa said that the determination, and focus of the team made the team to clinch the third position in the competition.

The coach of the winners, Toye Alawaye, told NAN that strong determination and perseverance of the girls gave them victory.

He urged the government and organisation to aid the development of female football. (NAN)

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