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  • Phreestyle Sports takes re-branding of Nigerian football campaign to FIFA school

    Reporter: Alonge Akinlolu
    Published: Wednesday, 5 July 2017
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    Phreestyle Sports take rebranding of Nigerian football campaign to FIFA school

    One of the leading sports consultancy firms in Nigeria, Phreestyle Sport have taken the promotion of the Nigerian football to far away South Africa to attract more followership and acceptance.

    Shodunnke Shogo, the brain behind of Phreestyle Sport who is attending a final phase of a yearlong course on Sports Management at the International Center for Sports Studies, (FIFA/CIES) organized by the world football governing body in South Africa was joined by other students at the center to enlighten the soccer enthusiasts on the need good side of Nigerian football especially the Nigeria Professional Football League, NPFL which has attracted a lot pundits recently.

    Shogo, who is the only admitted student from West Africa in the ongoing course in South Africa has been championing series of campaigns and programs to change the face at which soccer pundits and followers view Nigerian football.

    He has conducted seminars and workshop for various top clubs at every cadre in Nigeria on how players can prepare for life after football, how club administrators and coaches can be a good role models to their athletes, using sports terms to relate to everyday life of an average athletes and officials among other captivating and life changing programs to raise the standard of football in the country.
    Phreestyle Sports take rebranding of Nigerian football campaign to FIFA school

    Shogo has however took it a step further on his campaigns with the initiative of using his students member at the FIFA course to promote the game of football in Nigeria which he believed would bring more positives to the game at home.

    "This is the continuation of what we have been doing at Phreestyle Sport, it's an opportunity to do it in a big way and outside the sides of Nigeria with my colleagues in South Africa and I think we've been to sell Nigerian football product to Africans in a positive way.

    "We need to see football beyond winning, we need imbibe the attitude of identifying with our favorite clubs, what we can give the clubs not necessarily mean financially but our commitments and carriage with such clubs.

    Some of the students that attended the final phase of the course spoke on the necessities of those campaigns which they believed would not only beneficial to Nigerian football but African as a whole.

    Sikhumbuzo Ndebele from Bulawayo, Zimbabwe noted that African orientation and perception towards football games had to change beyond getting three points.

    "I think Shogo is coming up with these campaigns at the right time.

    The 'Beyond Three Points' part of it really is the essence of sports, the way humanity appreciates football being the most participated game played in all society, people need to appreciate that.

    "When we do sports, we not only competing to be the winner, it's not a league kind of life style, it's also an additional personality, identity sense of belonging. So sports goes really beyond three points.
    Probably those who don't believe in this should consult the anthropologists and sociologists to explain the deeper sense of meaning on that. But certainly I do agree with all my hearts that sports or football as the case may be is beyond three points," Ndebele said.

    The former footballer also aired his views on the campaign 'Beyond Three Points'.

    "I think the game is more than just a results, it unites people. But the moment we pick side a say at all cost I want to win then we are bound to do something that will dent the image of the game. So we need to bring confidence in the game, and we can only do that if we look beyond the sportsmanship, if we look beyond the three points and say look, this is a beautiful game, it's unifies people, it's creates excitement for others, it creates employment for others. So we can't just be focus on the three points. Let us also look at the positives that come along with the game played.

    Ndebele who is into players' management and mentorship stressed the importance of 'My Team My Pride' campaign' noting that fans and supporters of football need to show absolute dedication towards clubs in their locality.

    "To me, this is very key. Whether during the good or bad times we need to appreciate our teams, the club's we support at all times. That is the foundational point and bed set of successes that we have seen in clubs like Barcelona, we have seen in England with teams like Liverpool, Manchester United, the sense of belonging the sense of pride of who you are, what you can bring into the world, what you can display.

    It's one essential factor that we need to identify with oneself as much as God has given us one fingerprints per individual, people really need to learn to appreciate where they come from, the team that they have and and make the best of it.
    Phreestyle Sports take rebranding of Nigerian football campaign to FIFA school

    Kgosana Masaseng who is the General Secretary of players' union in Botswana emphasized the need for players to plan for life after active careers and charged them to maintain a lifestyle that will accommodate their status during and after their active years in the game.

    "It's very important we take care of players' welfare issues very important once they are playing active football and after retirement and I think from what we've said this program is very good and it will maintain a certain lifestyle for players, in empowering knowledge, you training them, you're making them aware of their career after football, which is very key.

    "Research have shown that three years after retirement athletes go broke, so this is one of the best way to capacitate them and deal with issue which society will put a lot of pressure on these players in terms of having higher expectations of them of their lifestyle and stuffs like that. So it's very difficult to maintain their lifestyles after retirement. So such initiative will help them prepare for life after their footballing careers," he said.

    Masaseng advised Nigerians and African Football fans to always accepting results of the game.

    "In any game, there are three potential results; it's either you get a win, a draw or you lose. So what is very key in all these three aspects, you've got to accept the results that come with it, today may be your day, tomorrow might not be your day. Football is based on excellence, it's a competitive sports, so it is not not played on template. You don't go to the pitch and say I am the only one who should win, it is based on preparedness. So that being said they need to look beyond the results and look at the  positives that come with the game.

    He however expressed delight in what Shogo and Phreestyle sports' agenda, adding that the organization has working hard in addressing issues that affect the Nigerian football.

    "What I want to see happening at Nigeria is for Shogo's ideas and people with similar ideas as him to have space within Nigerian Football circle to contribute in the manners which they are doing because it can only bring positivity to Nigeria football. A lot of time, we know Nigerian football to be something else, so such  interventions by Shogo will come in handy in shaping the path to growth for the Nigerian football.

    According to Ndebele, he believed that Phreestyle sports through Shogo has got a quite number of interesting initiatives which can be used to revolutionize the way Africans see Football.

    "These initiatives by Shogo will help us to change the way we knew football, the way we were taught football.

    "It's some of those initiatives that probably Africa needs at this moment, and we hope he's going to have the energy to see them through despite challenges that he might encounter in the process."

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