By; PATRICK TITUS, Uyo
Ahead of the Nigerian Professional Football League (NPFL) next season, Akwa Utd FC of Uyo has assured soccer fans in the country of a better and exciting performance.
The Chairman the Club and Senior Special Assistant to Akwa Ibom State Governor on Sports, Elder Paul Bassey who disclosed this while interacting with members of SWAN on Thursday in Uyo, the state capital, said that Akwa Utd was preparing a formidable team with good team that can compete favourably in the league, assuring that the team will make the fans proud next season.
Bassey maintained that though the Club did not do well last season because of many factors that surrounded the team, but stressed that quality players from other clubs in the NPFL have been reqistered to beef up the team.
The Akwa United Chairman who is also a member of Interim Management Committee (IMC), of the league, expressed optimism that Akwa United will win the league next season.
He disclosed further that from next season, fans would buy tickets to watch Akwa United, explaining that the money made from the ticketing would go a long way to augmenting the expenses of the club as things have become expensive.
Elder Bassey also hinted that wider consultations have been done with sports stakeholders to ensure the gate fee is affordable for fans who have so much trust in the club.
He called for sponsorship from individuals and corporate organisations, to drive the team properly for optimal success, posting out that Akwa United FC as a brand has brought honour to the state in recent times
He appreciated the Akwa Ibom State Chapter of the Sports Writers Association of Nigeria, SWAN for the publicity in the last five years.
Describing the last season as one of the worst for Akwa United and the Nigerian football, Elder Bassey however praised God that Akwa United and Dakkada FC did not go on relegation.
Elder Bassey reiterated the assurance that Akwa United would perform optimally in next football season as the management has put measures on ground to achieve the goal.
He called on the sports writers to be part of the team and offer constructive criticism to help propel the club.
He noted that there is zero tolerance in the club and called for more commitment on the part of the players.
The Head Coach of the club, Ayodeji Ayeni on his part said since his arrival, he has enjoyed the support of the media and intimated that preparations ahead of the 2022/2023 football season had started long ago from the simple to the complex.
He argued that although one cannot use pre season matches to judge the season, the coach said so far seventy percent success has been recorded.
The Chairman, Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN), Akwa Ibom State Chapter, Mr Emmanuel Akpan hailed the club for partnership with 1XBET, sports writers in Akwa Ibom and carrying SWAN members along during last season.
Mr Akpan assured the management of Akwa United of continued cooperation and support.
The SWAN chairman also supported the plans to collect ticket fees from fans as according to him, the practice is obtained in other clubs across the country.
Some of the sports writers at the meeting hailed, Akwa United for placing premium on the welfare of the players and for furnishing the media on the plans of the club ahead of the next season.