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Club owners are architects of bad officiating in Nigerian football – Zira 



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By Esther Egbe

Emmanuel Zira, the Chairman of Adamawa United Football Club of Yola, on Friday said club owners should share in the blame over bad officiating in Nigerian football.

Zira told National Daily that the club owners should be blamed for the poor officiating usually witnessed in matches across the country.

He said: “Officiating is part of football, so we need to raise the quality of officiating in our league. It is a fact that there are good referees and there are bad ones.

“I can only plead with the Referees’ Appointment Committee and the Nigeria Football Federation families at large to fish out the referees who are bent on destroying the good ones we have.

“But it must also be emphasised that we (club owners) are the architect of this bad officiating, because it takes two to tangle.

“If you don’t give, they (referees) will not collect.

Zira added that“If club owners make it a collective decision not to give money to referees but give it to the league managers to increase the package for the referees, then our league will grow.

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“This will also bring out the best in our coaches. Otherwise they will just fold their arms and believe that the club management will win the matches for them.”

The club official, whose club plays in the Northern Conference of the Nigeria National League, however, blamed some referees for intentionally making bad decisions on the pitch.
He called for the enhancement of their welfare package.
Zira said: “Bad referees should be identified and sanctioned.

“That is the only way we can put back our football where we want in Africa.
“However, referees’ welfare package should be enhanced.”


National Daily learnt that Augustine Eguavoen, a former captain and later coach of Super Eagles, had resigned his job as coach of Sunshine Stars FC of Akure earlier this month over officiating.

Eguavoen had claimed it was “due to the frustrating performance of Nigerian referees” in the 20-club Nigeria Professional Football League, where the club was facing relegation

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