COVID-19: Football Leagues To Resume September – NFF
Nigeria Football Federation has set September/November for the commencement of the 2020/2021 football league season in the country.
NFF made this known in a press statement by its spokesperson, Ademola Olajire, on Friday.
It said the decision is in-line with the resolutions passed at an online meeting of the NFF Football Committee which had in attendance the Chairpersons of all the National Leagues and the President of the Nigeria Referees Association, Otunba Tade Azeez.
Among the leagues listed to resume are the Nigeria Professional Football League, Nigeria Women Football League, Nigeria National League, National League One and the Aiteo Cup.
NFF noted that;
The leagues’ resumption is subject to the full reopening of the country and the approval of the health authorities.
The statement reads in part;
All dates for the 2020/2021 season to start are subject to the directives of the Federal Government in line with COVID-19 protocols. In addition, the full enforcement of licensing regulations and financial controls for the NPFL will commence from the 2020/2021 season. All clubs are required to comply, failing which they will be barred from participating.
The Nigeria Football Federation will formally take the resolutions to the next General Meeting of its Congress for ratification. In the meantime, these resolutions have been formally communicated to the Federal Ministry of Youth and Social Development.
The federation stressed;
The NNL 2019/2020 season which is at Matchday 3 – 5 and has been on break since December 17, 2019 is cancelled, null and void.
There will be no promotion to, or relegation, from NNL. The NFF will work with the NNL, the participating clubs and other stakeholders to ensure a successful fresh start from September/October 2020.
This will include a review of the NNL structure to optimize its development. The yet-to-commence NWFL and NLO 2019/2020 season is aborted. There will be no promotion to or relegation from NLO.
The AITEO Cup 2019/2020 which had only commenced at the State level is aborted. The 2019 AITEO Cup Winners to be presented to CAF for the 2020/2021 CAF Inter-Club competition (Nigeria’s 2nd slot in the CAF Confederation Cup), reserved for Federation Cup winners.
NFF had in March suspended all games till April due to coronavirus pandemic, however it was further suspended.