Monday, October 26, 2015 2:37 pm
Others were BCC Lions of Gboko, El Kanemi of Maiduguri, DIC Bees which became Ranchers Bees of kaduna, Rovers of Calabar, Sharks of PH, Adebajo Babes, Julius Berger, First Bank all of Lagos, Water Corporation of Ibadan, Ayufsalam Rocks of Ilorin, Femos Scorpion of Eruwa (?), Mighty Jets of Jos, Kano Pillars, just mention them.
How can we tell our children that we once had great teams in Nigeria with great followings? See football fans travelling thousands of kilometres to watch their teams play. Yours truly, as early as form two in secondary school, would leave school to watch Stationery Stores play IICC at Liberty stadium in Ibadan.
The fanaticism we saw of fans of great teams like Asec Mimosa of Cote D’voire, Tonerere Kalala of Cameroon or Hafias of Guinea parading the Titi and Papa Camara were nothing compared to the “shege” that followed Stores at Onikan or anytime they were playing away matches with rivals like Shooting stars or Abiola Babes.
How can I tell these Up Man U, Up Chelsea, Up Barca noise makers around my house that “na condition make crayfish bend?” Nigeria had football teams and a virle league right from the time of great administrators like Sunday Dankaro that stood their grounds in the 80s and early 90s.
How would they know that it was the wicked machinations and arrant visionlessness of Babagida that killed all the teams when MKO angrily pulled Abiola Babes out of the league and disbanded them? That was followed closely by John Mastoroudes who disbanded Leventis, then Iwuanyanwu, etc.
My following Green Eagles (sorry Super Eagles) now is just to be informed, not out of love for soccer. If you want me to follow Soccer again, go wake Stationery Stores Football Club of Lagos (Iyoooo) or IICC Shooting Stars of Ibadan. Don’t forget to wake Chief Lekan Salami and Baba Eleran (Alhaji Elekuru) and you will see me in Onikan or Liberty respectively in a few minutes.
All this La Liga or Bundis Liga or Premiership noise has never moved me a second! What is Rooney playing that Tarila Okorowanta didn’t play? What is Mata playing that Clement Temile didn’t play? Can we have better footballers than Dombraye, Kunle Awesu, Chief Justice Adokie Amesiemaka, Humphrey Edobor, Motor Engine Louis Igwilo, Zion Train Samson Ozogular, Uwem Ekarika, Henry Nwosu ? Good old days.
Anyway, I am not holding on to the past. Let us embrace the new by returning Nigeria to the path of sanity. I hope President Muhammadu Buhari will think of this.