The Nigeria Football Federation is deep in negotiations with their partner and giant kit manufacturers, Nike. The fresh contract is expected to be concluded and signed before the Super Eagles play their first game at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, Extrasportsnigeria.com reports.
We gathered from a top NFF official familiar with the details of the negotiations that both sides are almost satisfied with what is on the table right now.
He said, “Both sides have been talking and our teams are almost concluding the draft. The target is to conclude the deal and sign before the World Cup starts and that is possible now given the level of work already done.
“A lot of events are usually lined up immediately after the World Cup and we all agree that it is best to work things out now. And we are very positive that the final result will make a lot of positive impact on the brand Super Eagles and the fortunes of the team and Nigeria as a country at the World Cup. It’s all very good. I am not sure we have ever had the kind of package we are getting this time.”
From the detail available to our reporter, the NFF officials have been able to eliminate the third party relationship that had always existed in the dealings with Nike over the decades. This time the Federation is directly dealing with the world-renowned sports equipment giants unlike in the past where the packages are virtually released through the agents of the company.
“As a matter of fact, that aspect is one of the major highlights of the kind of relationship we have with Nike and our major partners right now.
“We have been able to prove that the federation works one hundred percent on corporate governance as seen in the best practices all over the world. The trust has continually attracted more and more sponsors and this all good for the Super Eagles brand and Nigeria.”
Another aspect of the deal is that the NFF has been able to include the states FAs in the deal. The target is to make Nike products and opportunities accessible to the states and to make merchandising a lot easier in Nigeria. The NFF is already working on building mini secretariats and standard practice pitches for the states and the Nike angle is meant to complement those plans.
The detail of the deal is expected to be made public in due course.
By Pius Ayinor
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