Siasia Confident Of Progression From Olympics Group, But Raises Concern Over Weather

Nigeria Olympic team coach Samson Siasia has said he expects to steer his team past a group that has Japan and Sweden at the Rio Olympics but has also raised concerns over the heat in Manus, where his team will play their first two matches.

Siasia said he expects Nigeria to reach the knockout rounds of the Rio Olympics from “a fair enough group”.

He guided Nigeria to the Gold medal match at Beijing 2008 and said he believes a wining start against Japan on August 4 will set the tone for another great campaign.

“I am targeting a convincing win in our opening match. Japan won’t be easy, but we need to beat them well to take command of the group,” he said.

“The win will give us the confidence for the matches against Sweden and Colombia.”

However, he said he is apprehensive about the heat in Manus, where Nigeria will play their first two matches.

“The only difficulty I foresee is the hot weather in manus for our first two games,” he said.

“All the same, that can’t stop us.”

Dream Team Draw Sweden, Japan For Olympics

African champions Nigeria have been drawn in a fair Rio Olympics first round group that also has continental champions Sweden and Japan.

The Dream Team VI are housed in Group B, which also has Colombia.

Sweden are the European tournament winners, Japan won the Asian version of the qualifiers, while Colombia beat USA in an intercontinental playoff to qualify for Rio.

Sweden won last year’s European U21 Championship in the Czech Republic after they defeated Portugal on penalties after a goalless draw in the final.

They won the 1948 Olympics Gold.

Rio will be Japan’s 10th appearance at the Olympics, the best record in Asia along Korea Republic, who Japan incidentally beat 3-2 in the continental final of the qualifiers.

The men’s football event of the Rio Olympics will be from August 4 to 20.

Nigeria won a historic Olympic Gold in 1996 and were beaten by Argentina in the Gold medal match at Beijing 2008.

Siasia Calls Up 30 Home-based Players To Dream Team

Nigeria Olympic team coach Samson Siasia has invited 30 players to camp in preparation for the men’s football tournament of this year’s Olympic Games, taking place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

The list of invited players is led by goalkeeper Emmanuel Daniel, also includes old reliables like defender Erhun Obanor, Stanley Dimgba, Kufre Ebong, Ndifreke Effiong, Ubong Ekpai and Daniel Etor.

Invitation has also been extended to new players like Godwin Obaje, Julius Emiloju, Ifeanyi Mathew, Kabiru Moshood and Harrison Ibukun.

The invited players are expected to arrive the Starview Hotel, Gwarinpa Estate, Abuja on Tuesday with their international passports, while training commences on Wednesday, 13th April.

THE INVITED PLAYERS

1. Emmanuel Daniel (Enugu Rangers)
2. Yusuf Mohammed (Kano Pillars)
3. Daniel Emmanson (Akwa United)
4. Omasteye Alex (First Bank)
5. Sincere Seth (Rhapsody FC)

6. Oduduwa Segun (Nath FC)
7. Obanor Erhun (MFM FC)
8. Ahamefule Chizoba (Abia Warriors)
9. Ndifreke Effiong (Abia Warriors)
10. Chima Akas (Enyimba FC)
11. Timothy Danladi (Katsina United)
12. Stanley Okorom (MFM FC)
13. Harrison Ibukun (Akwa United)
14. Ubong Ekpai (Akwa United)
15. David Itoho (Nath FC)
16. Kabiru Moshood (Ikorodu United)
17. Bright Onyedikachi (FC IfeanyiUbah)
18. Ifeanyi Mathew (Kano Pillars)

19. Tiongoli Tonbara (Bayelsa United)
20. Olisah Ndah (Rivers FC)
21. Julius Emiloju (MFM FC)
22. Joseph Osadiaye (Enyimba FC)
23. Daniel Etor (Enyimba FC)
24. Austine Dimgba (Sunshine Stars)
25. Ezekiel Mbah (Kano Pillars)
26. Abdulrahman Taiwo (Kwara United)
27. Godwin Obaje (Wikki Tourists)
28. Kufre Ebong (Akwa United)
29. Uchenna Agha (Freestans FC)
30. Godwin Aguda (Rangers FC)

Rio Olympics: Dream Team Seeded In Second Pot

Continental champions and 1996 Olympic gold medalists Nigeria have been seeded into the second pot for the Rio Olympics men’s football event with South Africa in the third pot.

Africa’s third flag bearers Algeria are in the fourth pot of teams.

According to FIFA, hosts Brazil will take the lead spot in Group A, with the teams allocated into four pots based on a ranking built according to performances at the past five Olympic Football Tournaments.

The ranking is weighted so that recent performances play a more prominent role, and a bonus is given to those nations who finished their qualifying competition as continental champions.

The 16 sides will be drawn into four groups of four (named Groups A-D), and the pot allocation for the Men’s Olympic Football Tournament is as follows:

Pot 1: Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Japan
Pot 2: Nigeria, Korea Republic, Honduras, Iraq
Pot 3: Sweden, Fiji, Portugal, South Africa
Pot 4: Algeria, Colombia, Denmark, Germany

The draw will be staged on Thursday, April 14, in Rio, while the tournament kicks off on August 3.

Rio 2016: NOC Unveils Media Partners

To ensure that Nigerians experience the magic of the Olympic Games, the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC) has unveiled broadcast and entertainment partners for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

During a press parley yesterday, President of the NOC, Habu Gumel said that the broadcast partners – Nigeria Television Authority (NTA), DAAR Communications, Silverbird Communication and Smooth Promotion (HIP TV) – are coming in at a time when the official countdown of the Rio Olympic begins.

The NOC boss said the agreement is a major contribution to the long term financial stability of the Olympic Movement in Nigeria. He said the move is also significant as it demonstrates the NOC’s resolve to become a self-sustaining body.

Gumel said that the selected stations would consistently broadcast live sporting and entertainment events from the Games, noting that the collaboration is very good for Nigeria’s sporting fan. “For a commercial perspective, this model is a win-win situation, which will help the NOC realise funds to support the activities of the Olympic Movement in the country.”

He said through the partnership, the Olympic Games broadcast would reach the widest possible audience, expand sports coverage, promote Olympic values, attract the youths, exploit multiple media options/new technologies and build long term relationships. He said that the NOC would be celebrating the day in grand style in many states across Nigeria.

According to Gumel, the stations would offer viewers the chance to watch every Olympic event for the duration of the Games, delivering about 170 hours of live sports coverage across its various platforms during the games.

NTA’s General Manager (sports), Abdulrahman Ibn Mohammed said his station was committed to the NOC’s idea, noting that it is a welcome development. He said the NTA has been broadcasting the Olympics live since the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. “We are willing and ready to go and what we are doing today (yesterday) is a result of months of discussion between the NOC and the broadcast partners.

HIP TV boss, Ayo Animashaun said he was excited about the partnership, promising that his outfit would do everything possible to bring the entertainment side of the Olympics to Nigerians. “I am excited that we are the entertainment partner and my promise to Nigerians is that we will deliver.

Dalung Defends Rio Inspection

Youth and Sports Minister, Solomon Dalung has described his delegation’s visit to Rio, venue of the forthcoming Olympic Games as indispensable .

Barrister Dalung made the remark after a three day visit of facilities in Rio to be used by Nigerian athletes during the games.

According to the Minister, the visit was necessary to enable the ministry to plan ahead for the games.

“Nigeria will be taking part in just a few sports and the venues are scattered all over Rio. Our visit to the various venues, some of which are ninety percent ready, was very essential to enable us to plan for our athletes. What we saw gave us a first hand information on what to expect in terms of movement, arrivals, accreditation and distance between games venues and athletes village as well as mode of transportation”.

The Rio Olympic Games start from August 5 – 21, 2016. More than 10,500 athletes from 206 National Olympic Committees, including Kosovo and South Sudan for the first time, will take part in the 31st Olympiad.

Nigeria will compete in athletics, canoeing, table tennis, men’s football, wrestling, Weightlifting and men’s basketball.

Dream Team To Face Brazil In Friendly

Chief Coach of the Nigeria Olympic team, Dream Team VI, Samson Siasia has disclosed that the team will face Brazil in a friendly next month as preparations for the Rio Olympics hits top gear.

“We are working on a friendly against Brazil for next month, we will get more details about this game next week,” said Siasia.

The match was earlier scheduled for last year in London, but was later shelved after the Nigeria Olympic team complained it was too close to the U23 AFCON in Senegal.

Nigeria eventually won the U23 AFCON in December to qualify for the Rio Olympics in Brazil in August.

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