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Nigeria FA row with league officials over format

Written by: Staff

LAGOS, Mar 20 (Reuters) The Nigeria Football Association (NFA) said today it would not approve the new league format adopted by the National Football League (NFL), sparking a row between the heads of both organisations.

The NFL announced last week that the 20-team premier league would be split into two groups with only the top two in each qualifying for play-offs to determine the overall winner.

''It's a ridiculous format and the NFA won't accept it,'' NFA chairman Ibrahim Galadima told reporters.

''The format will make the games fewer and it won't give us a true winner of the league title.'' Galadima's stance has infuriated NFL's re-elected boss Oyuiki Obaseki who said the new format and timing of the season, to run from September to May, would prevent top players leaving for European clubs.

''By so doing, our players won't be running overseas for trials with clubs when our league period would normally still be running,'' he said.

''NFA's decisions cannot be binding on us because we're a corporate body sourcing our own funds and running our own programmes,'' added Obaseki.

Reuters SY DB2334

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