2021 AFCON qualifier: CAF approves 5pm kickoff time for Nigeria vs Benin Republic
2021 AFCON qualifier: CAF approves 5pm kickoff time for Nigeria vs Benin Republic
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2021 AFCON qualifier: CAF approves 5pm kickoff time for Nigeria vs Benin Republic

The Confederation of African Football (CAF) has approved the 5 pm kickoff time for the Nigeria vs Republic of Benin 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier.

The game will be played at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium, Uyo on November 13.

The Nigeria Football Federation had reportedly requested the game be played in either the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin City or the Stephen Keshi Stadium in Asaba on November 14.

“All the argument about where the game will be played has been resolved after CAF confirmed Uyo to host the match against Benin Republic. Match time is 5 pm,” a Super Eagles team official was quoted by Punch.

A top government official in the state, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the Governor was yet to approve the request.

“I think an attempt (by the NFF) has been made but I can’t tell you if it’s been approved,” our source said.

“The greatest problem we have here is blackmail. That (Uyo) stadium was closed down on August 7, a day after the FIFA inspection (for the 2021 U-20 Women’s World Cup). Akwa United can’t train inside the stadium, nobody has entered there. When the Vice President came for the anniversary of our state, the governor did not go to the stadium, even on Independence Day, we didn’t use it.

“And we think it’s the highest point of blackmail for someone to say that the stadium is always hired out to fun-seekers and partygoers.

“I don’t think even the Governor will be happy with that. Somebody did that to sell the Asaba venue. If they grant Eagles use of that stadium, it will be a miracle because we are feeling bad about it.

“When we went for Obaseki’s burial in Benin, Pinnick inspected the Ogbemudia stadium, they were still planting grass. The players are complaining about Asaba pitch and Asaba rejected them for the U-23. Now they are running to Uyo after the blackmail. We felt very bad about it because the stadium has been under lock since August.”

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