Football hostilities at the All Financial Institutions’ Football Competition (AFIFC) sponsored by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), in collaboration with the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), will kick-off on Saturday, September 11, 2021, with the final billed for the U.J. Esuene Stadium, Calabar, Cross River State on Saturday, September 25, 2021.
According to the organisers, the group stages of the competition will hold between Saturday, September 11 and Thursday, September 16, 2021, with the quarter finals scheduled for Sunday, September 19, 2021.
The preliminary and quarter final matches of the 24-team competition have been scheduled for Lafia, Nasarawa State and Osogbo, Osun State, while the semi-finals will be played at the Uyo Township Stadium, Akwa Ibom State on Wednesday, September 22, 2021.
The finals and third-place matches will be decided inside the main bowl of the U.J. Esuene Stadium, Calabar on Saturday, September 25, 2021.
Briefing newsmen on the schedule of the competition in Abuja, the Director, Corporate Communications Department of the CBN, Mr. Osita Nwanisobi, disclosed that ex-international, Friday Ekpo will grace this year’s finals as a Special Guest, adding that all the games will be played with strict adherence to the COVID-19 protocols instituted by the President.
Mr. Nwanisobi also disclosed that the winners of this year’s competition, like in the year before the COVID-19 induced break, will pocket the sum of N2,000,000, while the runners-up will receive N1,500,000. The second runners-up and the fourth-placed teams will each receive the sums of N1,000,000 and N500,000, respectively.
Speaking further, the CBN spokesman reiterated the Bank’s commitment to the promotion and development of sporting activities in Nigeria, through its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) window.
It will be recalled that the Central Bank of Nigeria Football Club (CBN FC) won the 2019 All Financial Institutions’ Football Club (AFIFC) competition, after they beat the Unity Bank Football Club by a lone goal at the Pa Ngele Oruta Stadium, formerly known as Abakaliki Township Stadium. The competition, however, did not hold in 2020 due to the Corona virus pandemic that ravaged the world, leading to the suspension of all sporting activities.