A former Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, has said that the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF) is finding it hard to develop the game of football because it is focusing more on getting immediate results which he said is detrimental to football development in the country.
Abdullahi, who is the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Kwara Central Senatorial District for the forthcoming 2023 General Elections gave the position on Wednesday while delivering a lecture at the 33rd Media Parliament of Nigeria Union of Journalist (NUJ), Kwara State council at the NUJ Secretariat, Ilorin.
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The former minister said “The problem of the NFF is that they are too focused on getting immediate results, rather than strengthening the institutions that will ensure total development of the game from the grassroots”.
Abdullahi, who was the Minister when Nigeria won her third AFCON in 2013 after 19 years, said that it took the nation that long because of total neglect of the development culture in Nigerian football.
He also said the National Youth Games he initiated in 2013 was a deliberate plan to build athletes for the future which he said is yielding positive results today.
According to him, achieving podium success has to do with total commitment which could take an athlete about 10,000 hours of training, especially when doing so from at least seven years of age.