LMC plans to end Nigerian firms’ sponsorship of European clubs
The League Management Company (LMC) has revealed that it would work with the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) and the National Sports Commission (NSC) to ensure that firms operating in the country stopped sponsoring foreign clubs.
The plan, according to the LMC, is to push the Federal Government and the National Assembly to enact a law that will make it mandatory for Nigerian companies entering into sponsorship deals with European clubs to pay some percentage of the net worth of the deal to the domestic league.
Speaking at the inaugural sportspro.ng/Lagos Business School workshops, which held at the Pan Atlantic University on Tuesday, LMC Chairman, Mallam Shehu Dikko, also re-echoed the body’s position at the recent World Leagues Forum inaugural meeting in London, which sought a percentage of European Leagues’ broadcast and other commercial partnerships deals secured from Nigerian organisations for the airing of live games and other activations in the territory.
He lamented that investable funds that would have accelerated the development of football in the country are being channeled to foreign Leagues/club deals while the domestic league and clubs are left to struggle.
“Our biggest challenge is the struggle for the hearts of our fans and the proliferation of European football on television and promotion of foreign clubs contents by Nigerian companies. The intrusion of these broadcasts has made it more expensive to go to the stadium as just about N50 can get the average fan into a viewing center to see the foreign league and we are saying they should pay development grants in the forms of solidarity payments to us as they do to the lower leagues in their country,” argued the LMC boss.
His position was supported by the three Guest Speakers, Dr. Jim Pulcrano, a visiting Professor and member EMBA Teaching Team, Mr. Kelvin Roberts, Editorial Director, Sports Business Group and Robert Matsauki, former Technical Director of Association of National Olympic Commissions of Africa (ANOCA).
Roberts acknowledged that European football is devastating the development of football in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, saying, “the position of the LMC is reasonable and it is something that could be put on the table and negotiated but it is also important that you identify opportunities in the industry and utilize them”.