Oyo State Governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde, on Wednesday assured that his government would transform the Shooting Stars Sports Club (3SC) and return it to the Nigerian Premier League.
Governor Makinde, who spoke at the Stakeholders Forum he hosted in the State of the Football Club at the Executive Council Chambers, Governor’s office, Agodi Ibadan, also restated his government’s commitment to transform the 3SC and ensure that it reclaims its lost glory.
Makinde said his administration is ready to motivate and properly fund the club so that it could achieve the objective of gaining promotion to the premier league.
This was as stakeholders of the club, including the General Manager, Rasheed Balogun; Team Manager, Dimeji Lawal and Supporters’ Club chairman, Oluwafemi Olaniyi, among others, lauded Governor Makinde for his uncommon support to the 3SC in less than three months in office.
The stakeholders noted that the club had not only been underfunded by the last administration, it was also not given enough moral support even when it gained promotion to the NPFL.
A statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, quoted the Governor as saying that that the club should be playing in the Nigerian Premier League, in view of its rich history and dedicated fan base across Nigeria and even Africa.
He maintained that the state government would “do whatever is necessary at this point; pick up the pieces and face the future to ensure that the club reclaims its lost glory.”
The Governor assured the stakeholders, including the management and the players of the club, that his government would properly motivate and fund the club by giving it the required resources.
He directed the management of the club to forward a proposal to his office on any areas where it needed to fortify.
The Governor stated that his utmost concern was how the management would work hard to achieve desired goals, adding that he would make changes that would give desired result.
He, however, urged them to remember that to who much is given, much is expected, noting that if it would take a miracle for the team to gain promotion, then that miracle would happen, because his becoming the Governor of Oyo state was also a miracle.
“What happened at your last match in Asaba, you know when people start saying maybe it was by some uncommon means that we lost the match…, then I will tell you that my sitting here is a miracle. So, I say that 3SC will be promoted this season. If it will take a miracle, we will make it happen.
“We will make changes that can give us the desired result, what is important is that the management and the players should do their own bit, we will motivate you and properly fund the club. But to whom much is given, much is expected.
“We will give you the required resources and attention because of the importance we attach to the club. When 3SC is not doing well, you are not the only one feeling the pain; the generality of our people also feel the pain.
“We will look for ways and means to make things happen fast within the limit imposed by the governance structure. I have listened to you, and we will take into consideration what you have said,” the governor stated.
The Governor stressed that some of the problems identified by the stakeholders will be resolved by the Government, saying that “some of the challenges of 3SC are surmountable. I was in this state in the early 80s when Leventis United got promoted from Division 3 to Division 1 and in one season, won the Challenge Cup from Division 3.
“What 3SC mean to me is that it is a club that the generations of Makindes have been supporting. I am a die-hard Supporter of 3SC.
“3SC will definitely get promoted this season, if it will take a miracle, it won’t be anything new because you have a miracle Governor in the State. We have to make it happen and plan for it.”
Makinde declared that a Special Assistant would be appointed in the office of the governor in order to give the 3SC and Crown Football Club effective attention.
He also promised to attend some of the club’s matches.
The Governor asserted that his Government would not mix politics with sport administration in the state, saying that the only thing he cared about was to take 3SC to where it belonged in the country.
“We are not going to mix the sport administration with politics. I don’t care where you belong politically, what I care about is that we will make 3SC sit where it belongs in Nigeria football. Nobody should be afraid of their job because of how you came.
Earlier the Acting Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youths and Sports, Mrs. Olubisi Adegoke, attributed some of the challenges facing the club to lack of policy direction.
Adegoke also advocated for the establishment of Football Academy for the 3SC, where she said young players would be nurtured for future use.
On their part, the 3SC coach, Edith Agoye; the General Manager, Rasheed Balogun; Team Manager, Dimeji Lawal; the FA chairman, Oba James Odeniran; the chairman of the Supporters’ Club, Oluwafemi Oyeniyi and the team captain, apologised to the governor over the failure of the club to secure promotion to the NPFL.
Agoye assured the governor that the club has competent players that could secure promotion to NPFL this season, asking, however, that the state looked in the direction of improving the funding of the club.
Lawal and Balogun also implored the governor to fund the club adequately and timely, even as they urged the governor to occasionally visit the players during training, as such would motivate the morale of the players.
The meeting was attended by the Chief of Staff, Chief Bisi Ilaka; Secretary to the State Government, Mrs Olubanwo Adeosun; and Head of Service, Mrs Ololade Agboola; Deputy Chief of Staff, Mr Olawale Mogbonjubola, among others.
Argentine football ‘lord’, Maradona is dead
Argentine football legend, Diego Maradona has died of cardiac arrest at the age of 60.
Maradona’s spokesman confirmed the tragic story on Wednesday.
It will be recalled that the Gimnasia coach had been hospitalised at the start of November, days after celebrating the landmark birthday, after complaining of low spirits and fatigue.
Tests at the La Plata clinic revealed a blood clot on the brain, which doctors later revealed was operated on successfully.
Maradona was subsequently released from hospital as an outpatient to continue his convalescence, which he carried out in his dwelling in a private neighbourhood near Tigre, northern Buenos Aires.
Unfortunately, on Wednesday morning he suffered cardiac arrest, and paramedics at the scene failed to revive him.
3SC, Crown FC are coming back stronger – Oyo sports commissioner assures
Oyo State Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Mr. Seun Fakorede on Tuesday reassured football fans in the state that the Shooting Stars Sporting Club popularly known as 3SC, and Crown FC of Ogbomoso are coming back stronger.
The Commissioner also added that he was sure that the clubs will perform excellently well and secure promotion back to the elite stage in the Nigerian football league.
Fakorede who gave the assurance in Ibadan, the state capital while featuring on Parrot Xtra Hour on Radio also informed that Governor Seyi Makinde has allocated a total sum of about five and a half billion naira which he regarded as a modest cost for the remodeling of the popular Lekan Salami Stadium Adamasingba, Ibadan, to meet international standards while promising to give facelifts to all other sections in the stadium.
He maintained that the present administration is committed to improving the economic infrastructure of the state and eradicate unemployment among youths in the State.
According to him, the governor is working tirelessly to revamp all the sectors of the state as he has given the approval of 500 million naira as a starter fund for youths’ empowerment in the state while engaging about 5000 youths to be employed by the state’s teaching service commission.
He also appealed for patience from Oyo youths on the issue of the dilapidated structures at the Ososami youth center.
“We are actually rehabilitating; we can’t possibly do everything at once. We have decided to put them in phases and fortunately, Ososami youth center is part of the project to enjoy the first phase of renovation”, he said.
Fakorede further assured that concerted efforts are being put in place by the various concerned ministries to see that youths and children roaming the street are catered for, while emphasizing that a lot of work still should be done to arrest the ugly situation of children roaming the streets.
The Commissioner, however charged Oyo youths not to be intimidated by any obstacle that might confront them as it is a “stepping stone to greatness”.
Maradona to remain in hospital for treatment after surgery, says Doctor
Argentine soccer legend Diego Maradona is to remain in hospital for several more days to undergo treatment following surgery to remove a blood clot on the brain, his doctor said Thursday.
“We saw that in the postoperative phase Diego had episodes of confusion,” Leopoldo Luque told reporters.
Therapists treating Maradona had linked the behaviour to withdrawal symptoms and the necessary treatment would last “a few days,” he said.
Luque did not provide details, but Maradona has a long history of drug and alcohol addiction.
Although he has publicly said he no longer uses cocaine, friends and media reports have suggested he remains addicted to alcohol.
At a press conference outside the private clinic in Buenos Aires where surgeons spent 80 minutes removing the clot on Tuesday night, Luque took pains to present an upbeat assessment of the 60-year-old’s overall condition.
“Diego is doing well. The CT scan came out well. We were even dancing. Yes, we danced!” the doctor said.
The doctor said Maradona “agrees” with the diagnosis and would remain in the clinic.
Earlier Thursday, he said doctors were happy with the former player’s condition: “He can walk, talk to me….It’s very early this, but the recovery is excellent.”
World Cup winner Maradona had been taken to hospital in La Plata — where he is the coach of top-flight side Gimnasia y Esgrima — on Monday for a series of tests after feeling unwell.
A scan revealed the blood clot, and on Tuesday he was transferred to the clinic in a northern neighborhood of the capital.
Fans have flocked to the clinic to leave banners showing the star in his prime and messages of support for the ailing icon.
Alongside Brazil’s Pele, who turned 80 last month, Maradona is widely regarded as one of the greatest players of all time.
– ‘Depressed’ –
Maradona, who turned 60 on Friday, has suffered ill health before. He has survived two heart attacks, and also contracted hepatitis and underwent gastric bypass surgery.
Prior to falling ill, Maradona had been depressed, his lawyer Matias Morla said on Wednesday.
The famously fast-living icon had only been able to spend half an hour at his own birthday celebration at his team’s training ground on Friday, when he had difficulty walking.
“He was behaving strangely. He was very depressed and spoke about dead relatives that he missed,” said Morla.
He said Maradona was “very worried” about the surgery and praised Luque, adding that “if he hadn’t detected the clot, Maradona’s fate would have been different.”
Luque insisted on Tuesday that the procedure was “a routine operation.”
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