Nigeria has today joined the global football nations as it receives the UEFA Champions League Trophy on tour of the country.
• Sports Minister Mr Sunday Dare, right in handshake with the UEFA Champions League Trophy Tour Ambassador, Clarence Seedorf
The Honourable Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mr Sunday Dare, who received the Trophy presented to him by Heineken, in his office at the Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja, expressed his excitement over the choice of Nigeria for the touring of the Trophy as he described it as “the second most important Trophy in football after the FIFA World Cup Trophy”.
Dare stated that Nigeria is a football loving nation, that has had a strong attachment to the Champions League over the years.
He stated further that “the Tour Ambassador, Clarence Seedorf is one of the most successful players in UEFA Champions League history, as he is the first and currently the only player to have won the UEFA Champions League Trophy with three clubs.”
The Minister who called on Nigerian youth to get themselves involved in sporting activities, said that Austin Jay Jay Okocha, Finidi George, Kanu Nwankwo and Daniel Amokachi represent the golden generation of Nigeria in football till today.
He expressed optimism that Samuel Chukwueze, who is the only Nigerian youth left playing in the Champions League today, will hopefully be the next Nigerian after Finidi George, Nwankwo Kanu and John Mikel Obi to put his hands on the trophy.
Speaking earlier, the leader of the delegation and the Corporate Affairs Manager of Nigerian Breweries, Shade Morgan, while officially presenting the trophy to the Honourable Minister, said that the presentation of the trophy was among other things, aimed at boosting the morale of Nigerian Youth towards sporting activities to make themselves self employed and self reliant so as to contribute to the growth and development of Nigeria economy.