Aisha Falode, Chairperson of the Nigerian Women Football League (NWFL) in a press conference on Wednesday, February 14th, unveiled plans for the maiden edition of the NWFL Champions Shield. Designed to be a showcase event for both old, new and potential fans to appreciate the quality of the women’s league/game in Nigeria, the NWFL Champions Shield, the first of its kind in the history of women’s football in the country is the royal celebration of the very best of the Nigeria Women’s Football League where the two best teams (the champion of the premier league and holders of the Aiteo/Federation Cup) from the previous season will square up against each other to determine the true champions of women’s football for the season.
The NWFL chairperson, Aisha Falode said “this innovation is part of the board’s drive to give the league a solid footing and the much-needed flavor to attract potential partners/sponsors for the women’s league. This is a top-class NWFL programme by all standards and it promises to live up to its billing. Lagos fans are certainly going to witness what they have not seen previously about women’s football when these two gladiators confront each other at the Agege Stadium on March 4th”.
Falode added, “The advantage and importance of football cannot be over-emphasized in the world today, especially to the development of the girl-child knowing the meaning and benefits of the popular phrase – catch them young. A UEFA research report released in 2017 confirmed that teenage girls who play football are more confident than girls who play other sports or no sports at all. We at the NWFL will, therefore, work assiduously to spread the gospel of football to equip the girl-child for a purposeful life.
As a part of this maiden edition of the Champions Shield, the NWFL will engage young girls in a one-day event using football as a tool to engage, educate and empower them. That’s our CRS mentorship talk to the girl-child as it concerns education and sports. Over 1, 000 girls are expected.” This project is proudly sponsored by the Lagos state government.
Also speaking at the event, the chairman of Lagos State Sports Council, Dr. Kweku Tandoh said the state support for the NWFL programme is in line with its expansive programme to move sports forward leveraging on the women football. “Lagos state’s support for the NWFL is in line with its avowed programme to move sports forward in the state. His excellence, Akinwunmi Ambode did not hesitate to buy into the Aisha Falode NWFL led board because of his conviction in using sports as a potent tool to drive the human development campaign of the state as well as making the state a hobnob of sports in the country. The state will gladly consider hosting the NWFL Champions Shield once again should the league body ask for it,” said Tandoh.
The NWFL Champions Shield will from this season be the curtain-raising event to herald every new NWFL season. This maiden edition of the Champions Shield competition will feature the champions of the 2016-17 premier league/Super 4, the Nasarawa Amazons FC, against the 2017 Aiteo Cup winners, Rivers Angels FC. The fixture is a recognized competitive football super cup. It will be recalled that the NWFL on the 6th of February, 20an8 signed a MOU with the Sports Association of the national Spanish Football Competition, LaLiga de Fútbol Profesional (LaLiga), towards the development of women’s football, as well as encouraging women for sports management administration in both Nigeria and Spain.