The organizers of the Prince Dapo Abiodun Pre-season Tournament have revealed that this year’s edition will hold from 6-23 November, 2020 in Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State.
The maiden edition of the prestigious pre-season tournament was held in 2019 in Ijebu-ode in Ogun State with Shooting Stars emerging champions after defeating Delta Force 1-0 in the final.
The tournament also witnessed a historic moment in the semi-final game when Shooting Stars defeated Lobi Stars 5-0.
Tournament Coordinator Oye Bawala has revealed that the second edition promises improved organization and top-notch competition for participating clubs.
Bawala stressed that the tournament will ensure complete adherence with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) guidelines on COVID19.
“We recorded a huge success last season in the maiden edition and we are looking forward to the second edition,” he said.
“We have reviewed the organization and we are planning to improve on all fronts this year, this edition is unique because of the outbreak of COVID19. We have set out modalities to meet up with the NCDC guidelines, we will get support from the Ogun State Government and the Ministry of Health.
“The competition helped the clubs that participated last season, the clubs were happy with the positive impact and how the tournament shaped their season. The clubs were able to compete brilliantly in their various leagues,” said Bawala.
The organizers have confirmed 11 Nigeria Professional Football League (NPFL) clubs and five Nigeria National League (NNL) clubs will compete for honours in Ijebu-ode.
The pedigree of the shortlisted teams makes the tournament the biggest pre-season tournament in Nigeria.
Defending champions Shooting Stars will lead other four NNL clubs including, Crown FC, Bendel Insurance, Remo Stars, and Gateway FC.
The NPFL clubs include: Four-time league champions Kano Pillars, Rivers United, Warri Wolves, MFM FC, Nasarawa United, Adamawa United, Lobi Stars, Kwara United, Heartland FC, Wikki Tourists, and seven-time league winners Rangers International.
Bawala added: “We have confirmed 16 clubs, these are clubs with pedigree that will make the tournament glamorous. The competitive level will be high and we are expecting fireworks in Ijebu-ode. We are also working on sponsors that will make the tournament more colourful.
“The tournament had a business impact on the communities in Ijebu-ode and the benefits on various businesses like hotels, transportation, food communities and more were enormous. The State Government saw the benefits and they are keen on sustaining the tournament.”