NIGERIA’S FOOTBALL LOVERS: Emeka, wetin be score?

 One thing I know Nigerians love so much is football. So much is the love that football has been termed ‘the unifying factor’ among various tribes in Nigeria.

A typical football match involving Nigeria’s national team would see Yoruba, Igbo and Hausa men, irrespective of religion, holding hands and praying for their team to emerge victorious. That’s the power of football.index 2

The issue of power failure and the high cost of digital satellites have hindered many passionate Nigerians from enjoying football games in the past.

However with the emergence of football viewing centers, the story has not quite been the same. Football enthusiasts now watch football matches comfortably without spending much.

A typical football viewing center would be made up of a large space:usually a hall or an empty land. With the help of a fabricator, the empty land would be turned into something comfortable.

Benches would be another requirement – classy ones would have chairs and sofa – a large television connected to digital satellite, fans or air conditioners to cushion the heat the crowd might bring and a generating set just in case the power-holding company decides to hold power.

The love football brings via the viewing centers is really amazing. Take this scenario for example: Emeka goes to visit his friend Jude and they decide to go watch the Chelsea football match played at that time.

At the viewing center, Emeka who is a fan of the Chelsea football club meets Paul, another fan of the same club. At the end of the match, Chelsea football club emerge winners and celebrations begin. Emeka and Paul exchange contacts and new friendship born.

One interesting thing, I discovered about viewing centers was that everyone present is a pundit, qualified football analysts of some sort. You will be surprised at how much information people keep in their head concerning football.

People shout at the top of their voices, trying to make their points known. They mention names of players in big clubs and various trophies they won.

If memorizing biochemical pathways is a problem, people keep50 year history of football in their heads… nawahoo.

Do you know that there is an association of arsenal football club fans in Nigeria? Don’t be surprised, even Chelsea and Manchester united football clubs also have fans association in Nigeria.
Football viewing centers are either directly or indirectly responsible for this. Whenever two big teams are playing, for instance, Chelsea and Arsenal football clubs go up against each other.

Viewing centers are almost always divided. Chelsea fans sit at one end of the hall while arsenal fans sit at the other end. Different associations sprang up from this division.

Football viewing center is a thriving business in Nigeria, one of Africa’s football power houses. A venture into one is lucrative, if one had the means.

I have had talks with few owners who shared with me that they make between N5000 to N30, 000 per match, that’s depending on the size of the center and the teams involved in the games.

So you want to give it a try? I have few tips for you. Ensure your building is well ventilated. One thing football lovers hate the most is to part with their money and be uncomfortable. Install air conditioners if you have the means.

Use an uninterruptible power supply, UPS. Never let power interruption disrupt a game. A refrigerator with cold drinks will go a long way in helping losing team calm down, so buy one.

Surely with these tips you will smile to the bank every week. Don’t worry you can thank me later.

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