NNL: ‘I’m in severe pains’, JM Liberty president breaks down over poor officiating

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The president of Nigeria National League side, JM Liberty FC of Makurdi Jeremiah Avungu has identified bad officiating as the major bane facing  football development in the country.

In a chat with Blueprint Sport Wednesday, Avungu said the problem facing  football in  the country are too many but poor officiating is the major bane.

In an emotional laden voice, the proprietor of the top flying club narrated what happened in Makurdi between his club, JM Liberty FC and the visiting Doma FC in Week 19 of Group A2 of the 2021/22 NNL season on Monday evening.

He alleged that “from onset it was clear that the referee was rooting for Doma Fc even a blind man see that he’s for the away team. I tried to warned him but all my pleas fell on dear ears because they came with a mission.

“This  same referee was in Abuja to officiate NAF Fc versus the same Doma. He gave them (Doma) victory over NAF in Abuja by awarding questionable penalty to the chagrin of the home team which I politely pointed out to him.

“The centre referee, Abdulrazak Abdulsalam from Kaduna was a kill-joy. And his compatriot Yazid Bashir and Joseph Anthony awarded questionable goal against my team. The whole fans were boiling.

“With tears in my eyes, I had to safeguard the life of the referee if not, he would have been killed .The fans were incense and spoiling  for war but I did everything humanly possible to save his life.”  

The president lamented that he was on the verge of withdrawing his team from the NNL.

“The actions of the referees totally devastated me. I was on the verge of pulling my team out of the NNL. I was almost making a vow that I will never, never play in the Nigerian league again. They are frustrating us especially we private club owners. May be they only want government clubs to play in the league.

“It’s frustrating for me. Look at the number of boys I have taken off the streets. I invested my money, time and resources but some people somewhere are tele-guiding and determining the outcome of matches. It is unjust and unfair,” he said.

Avungu also said the moment the hydra-headed bad officiating is tackled, Nigerian football will witness a new dawn.

“The moment will fix  bad officiating we will have the best in terms of football development in the continent,” he concluded.

JM Liberty is battling to stay afloat in the NNL with just three matches to go.

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